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THE 


SACRED BOOKS OF THE EAST 


TRANSLATED 


BY VARIOUS ORIENTAL SCHOLARS 


AND EDITED TA’’ 


F. MAX MULLER 


VOL. XXXIV 


AT THE CLARENDON PRESS 
1890 


[y/// reset ved^ 




THE 


vedanta-sOtras 

WITH THE COMMENTARY BY 

^ankarA^^Arya 

TRANSLATED BY 

GEORGE THIBAUT 


PART I 


AT THE CLARENDON PRESS 
1890 


\_All rights reserved'] 




CONTENTS. 


Introduction 


PAGli 

ix 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS WITH THE COMMENTARY 
BY 6'ANKARA/CARYA. 


Adhyaya I. 

Padal 

Pada II 

Pada III 

Pada IV 


107 

154 

237 


Adhyaya II. 

Pada I 

Pada II 


290 

363 


Transliteration of Oriental Alphabets adopted for the Trans- 
lations of the Sacred Books of the East . . , . 


445 




INTRODUCTION. 


To the sacred literature of the Brahmans, in the strict 
sense of the term, i.e. to the Veda, there belongs a certain 
number of complementary works without whose assistance 
the student is, according to Hindu notions, unable to do 
more than commit the sacred texts to memory. In 
the first place all Vedic texts must, in order to be under- 
stood, be' read together with running commentaries such as 
Saya;2a’s commentaries on the Sawhitas and Brahma;^as, 
and the Bhashyas ascribed to wSahkara on the chief Upani- 
shads. But these commentaries do not by themselves 
conduce to a full comprehension of the contents of the 
sacred texts, since they confine themselves to explaining 
the meaning of each detached passage without investigating 
its relation to other passages, and the whole of which they 
form part ; considerations of the latter kind are at any rate 
introduced occasionally only- The task of taking a com- 
prehensive view of the contents of the Vedic writings as a 
whole, of systematising what they present in an unsyste- 
matical form, of showing the mutual co-ordination or sub- 
ordination of single passages and sections, and of reconciling 
contradictions — which, according to the view of the orthodox 
commentators, can be apparent only — is allotted to a sepa- 
rate i'astra or body of doctrine which is termed Mima?;2sa, 
i.e. the investigation or enquiry kut e^oxi'p, viz. the enquiry 
into the connected meaning of the sacred texts. 

Of this Mima7/2sd two branches have to be distinguished, 
the so-called earlier (purva) MimfiOTsa, and the later (uttara) 
Mimawsa. The former undertakes to systematise the 
karmaki722/a, i.e. that entire portion of the Veda which is 
concerned with action, pre-eminently sacrificial action, and 
which comprises the Sa/whitas and the Brahma^^as exclusive 
of the Ara;/yaka portions ; the latter performs the same 



X 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


service with regard to the so-called i.e. that 

part of the Vedic writings which includes the Ara/^yaka 
portions of the Brahmawas, and a number of detached 
treatises called Upanishads. Its subject is not action but 
knowledge, viz. the knowledge of Brahman. 

At what period these two j-astras first assumed a definite 
form, we are unable to ascertain. Discussions of the nature 
of those which constitute the subject-matter of the Purva 
Mimawsa must have arisen at a very early period, and the 
word Mima7/zsa itself together with its derivatives is 
already employed in the Brdhma;^as to denote the doubts 
and discussions connected with certain contested points of 
ritual. The want of a body of definite rules prescribing how 
to act, i.e. how to perform the various sacrifices in full 
accordance with the teaching of the Veda, was indeed an 
urgent one, because it was an altogether practical want, 
continually pressing itself on the adhvaryus engaged in 
ritualistic duties. And the task of establishing such rules 
was moreover a comparatively limited and feasible one ; for 
the members of a certain Vedic jakha or school had to do 
no more than to digest thoroughly their own brahma/a and 
saw^hita, without being under any obligation of reconciling 
with the teaching of their own books the occasionally con- 
flicting rules implied in the texts of other rdkhas. It was 
assumed that action,- as being something which depends on 
the will and choice of man, admits of alternatives, so that 
a certain sacrifice may be performed in different ways by 
members of different Vedic schools, or even by the followers 
of one and the same rakha. 

The Uttara Mimd»2sd“rdstra may be supposed to have 
originated considerably later than the Purva Mima;;2sa. In 
the first place, the texts with which it is concerned doubtless 
constitute the latest branch of Vedic literature. And in the 
second place, the subject-matter of those texts did not call 
for a systematical treatment with equal urgency, as it was 
in no way connected with practice ; the mental attitude of 
the authors of the Upanishads, who in their lucubrations on 
Brahman and the soul aim at nothing less than at definite- 
ness and coherence, may have perpetuated itself through 



INTRODUCTION. 


XI 


many generations without any great inconvenience resulting 
therefrom. 

But in the long run two causes must have acted with 
ever-increasing force, to give an impulse to the systematic 
working up of the teaching of the Upanishads also. The 
followers of the different Vedic jakhis no doubt recog- 
nised already at an early period the truth that, while 
conflicting statements regarding the details of a sacrifice 
can be got over by the assumption of a vikalpa, i. e. an 
optional proceeding, it is not so with regard to such 
topics as the nature of Brahman, the relation to it of the 
human soul, the origin of the physical universe, and the like. 
Concerning them, one opinion only can be the true one, and 
it therefore becomes absolutely incumbent on those, who 
look on the whole body of the Upanishads as revealed 
truth, to demonstrate that their teaching forms a con- 
sistent whole free from all contradictions. In addition 
there supervened the external motive that, while the karma- 
ka/^rfa of the Veda concerned only the higher castes of 
brahmanically constituted society, on which it enjoins 
certain sacrificial performances connected with certain re- 
wards, the ^ 72 anaka? 2 ^a, as propounding a certain theory of 
the world, towards which any reflecting person inside or 
outside the pale of the orthodox community could not but 
take up a definite position, must soon have become the 
object of criticism on the part of those who held different 
views on religious and philosophic things, and hence stood 
in need of systematic defence. 

At present there exists a vast literature connected with the 
two branches of the Mima?;i:sa. We have, on the one hand, all 
those works which constitute the Purva Mima^^sa-jrastra — or 
as it is often, shortly but not accurately, termed, the Mima^wsa- 
s-astra — and, on the other hand, all those works which are 
commonly comprised under the name Vedanta-s'astra. At 
the head of this extensive literature there stand two collec- 
tions of Sutras (i. e. short aphorisms constituting in their 
totality a complete body of doctrine upon some subject), 
whose reputed authors are Ualmini and Badaraya//a. There 
can, however, be no doubt that the composition of those two 



VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


xii 


collections of Sutras was preceded by a long series of pre- 
paratory literary efforts of which they merely represent the 
highly condensed outcome. This is rendered probable by 
the analogy of other j-astras, as well as by the exhaustive 
thoroughness with which the Sutras perform their task of 
systematising the teaching of the Veda, and is further 
proved by the frequent references which the Sutras make to 
the views of earlier teachers. If we consider merely the 
preserved monuments of Indian literature, the Sutras (of the 
two Mimawsas as well as of other j-astras) mark the begin- 
ning ; if we, however, take into account what once existed, 
although it is at present irretrievably lost, we observe that 
they occupy a strictly central position, summarising, on the 
one hand, a series of early literary essays extending over 
many generations, and forming, on the other hand, the head 
spring of an ever broadening activity of commentators as 
well as virtually independent writers, which reaches down to 
our days, and may yet have some future before itself. 

The general scope of the two Mima/z/sa-sutras and their 
relation to the Veda have been indicated in what precedes. 
A difference of some importance between the two has, how- 
ever, to be noted in this connexion. The systematisation of 
the karmakazA/a of the Veda led to the elaboration of two 
classes of works, viz. the Kalpa-sutras on the one hand, and 
the Purva Mimazzzsa-sutras on the other hand. The former 
give nothing but a description as concise as possible of the 
sacrifices enjoined in the Brahma/zas ; while the latter 
discuss and establish the general principles which the 
author of a Kalpa-sutra has to follow, if he wishes to render 
his rules strictly conformable to the teaching of the Veda. 
The^/z^naka/A/a of the Veda, on the other hand, is systema- 
tised in a single work, viz. the Uttara MimazAsa or Veddnta- 
sutras, which combine the two tasks of concisely stating the 
teaching of the Veda, and of argumentatively establishing 
the special interpretation of the Veda adopted in the Sutras. 
This difference may be accounted for by two reasons. In 
the first place, the contents of the karmakazzffa, as being of 
an entirely practical nature, called for summaries such as 
the Kalpa-sutras, from which all burdensome discussions of 



INTRODUCTION, 


Xlll 


method arc excluded ; while there was no similar reason for 
the separation of the two topics in the case of the purely 
theoretical science of Brahman. And, in the second place, 
the Vedanta-sutras throughout presuppose the Purva 
Mima 7 ;^sa-sutras, and may therefore dispense with the 
discussion of general principles and methods already esta- 
blished in the latter. 

The time at which the two Mim^?;?2sa-sutras were com- 
posed we are at present unable to fix with any certainty ; 
a few remarks on the subject will, however, be made later 
on. Their outward form is that common to all the so- 
called Sutras which aims at condensing a given body of 
doctrine in a number of concise aphoristic sentences, and 
often even mere detached words in lieu of sentences. 
Besides the Mima?«sa-sCitras this literary form is common 
to the fundamental works on the other philosophic systems, 
on the Vedic sacrifices, on domestic ceremonies, on sacred 
law, on grammar, and on metres. The two Mimawsa- 
sutras occupy, however, an altogether exceptional position 
in point of style. All Sutras aim at conciseness; that is 
clearly the reason to which this whole species of literary 
composition owes its existence. This their aim they reach 
by the rigid exclusion of all words which can possibly be 
spared, by the careful avoidance of all unnecessary repeti- 
tions, and, as in the case of the grammatical Sutras, by the 
employment of an arbitrarily coined terminology which 
substitutes single syllables for entire words or combination 
of words. At the same time the manifest intention of the 
Sutra writers is to express themselves with as much clear- 
ness as the conciseness affected by them admits of. The 
aphorisms are indeed often concise to excess, but not 
otherwise intrinsically obscure, the manifest care of the 
writers being to retain what is essential in a given phrase, 
and to sacrifice only what can be supplied, although perhaps 
not without difficulty, and an irksome strain of memory and 
reflection. Hence the possibility of understanding without 
a commentary a very considerable portion at any rate of 
the ordinary Sutras. Altogether different is the case of the 
two Mima?;2sd-sutras. There scarcely one single Sfitra is 



XIV 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


intelligible without a commentary. The most essential 
words are habitually dispensed with; nothing is, for instance, 
more common than the simple omission of the subject or 
predicate of a sentence. And when here and there a Sutra 
occurs whose words construe without anything having to be 
supplied, the phraseology is so eminently vague and obscure 
that without the help derived from a commentary we should 
be unable to make out to what subject the Shtra refers. 
When undertaking to translate either of the Mima/z^sa- 
sutras we therefore depend altogether on commentaries ; 
and hence the question arises which of the numerous com- 
mentaries extant is to be accepted as a guide to their right 
understanding. 

The commentary here selected for translation, together 
with Badardya/^a’s Sutras (to which we shall henceforth 
confine our attention to the exclusion of 6^aimini’s Purva 
Mimawzsa-sutras), is the one composed by the celebrated 
theologian S'ahkara or, as he is commonly called, .Sahkara- 
y^arya. There are obvious reasons for this selection. In 
the first place, the S'ahkara-bhishya represents the so- 
called orthodox side of Brahmanical theology which strictly 
upholds the Brahman or highest Self of the Upanishads as 
something different from, and in fact immensely superior to, 
the divine beings such as Vishzzu or .Siva, which, for many 
centuries, have been the chief objects of popular worship in 
India. In the second place, the doctrine advocated by 
vSahkara is, from a purely philosophical point of view and 
apart from all theological considerations, the most im- 
portant and interesting one which has arisen on Indian soil ; 
neither those forms of the Vedanta which diverge from the 
view represented by S'ahkara nor any of the non-Veddntic 
systems can be compared with the so-called orthodox 
Veddnta in boldness, depth, and subtlety of speculation. 
In the third place, 6'ahkara’s bhashya is, as far as we know, 
the oldest of the extant commentaries, and relative antiquity 
is at any rate one of the circumstances which have to be 

^ The Sutras in which the ^Snaka?/«'a of the Veda is systematised go by 
various names, being called either Veddnta-siltras, or Uttara MimS?;<!sa-sutras, 
or Brahma-sCitras, or .S'^rtraka Mimaws^-sutras. 




INTRODUCTION. 


XV 


taken into account, although, it must be admitted, too much 
weight may easily be attached to it. The .Sahkara-bhashya 
further is the authority most generally deferred to in India 
as to the right understanding of the Vedanta-sutras, and 
ever since Sankara’s time the majority of the best thinkers 
of India have been men belonging to his school. If in 
addition to all this we take into consideration the intrinsic 
merits of vSniikara’s work which, as a piece of philo- 
sophical argumentation and theological apologetics, un- 
doubtedly occupies a high rank, the preference here given 
to it will be easily understood. 

But to the European — or, generally, modern — translator 
of the Vedanta-sutras with .Sankara’s commentary another 
question will of course suggest itself at once, viz. whether 
or not .Sankara’s explanations faithfully render the intended 
meaning of the author of the Sutras. To the Indian 'Pandit 
of S’ahkara’s school this question has become an indifferent 
one, or, to state the case more accurately, he objects to 
its being raised, as he looks on S'ahkara’s authority as 
standing above doubt and dispute. When pressed to 
make good his position he will, moreover, most probably 
not enter into any detailed comparison of S'ahkara’s com- 
ments with the text of Badaraya; 2 a’s Sutras, but will rather 
endeavour to show on speculative grounds that 6'ahkara’s 
philosophical view is the only true one, whence it of course 
follows that it accurately represents the meaning of Bida- 
xtyana^ who himself must necessarily be assumed to have 
taught the true doctrine. But on the modern investigator, 
who neither can consider himself bound by the authority of 
a name however great, nor is likely to look to any Indian 
system of thought for the satisfaction of his speculative 
wants, it is clearly incumbent not to acquiesce from the out- 
set in the interpretations given of the Veddnta-sMras — and 
the Upanishads — by Sankara and his school, but to submit 
them, as far as that can be done, to a critical investigation. 

This is a task which would have to be undertaken even if 
Sankara’s views as to the true meaning of the Sutras and 
Upanishads had never been called into doubt on Indian 
soil, although in that case it could perhaps hardly be entered 



XVI 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


upon with much hope of success ; but it becomes much more 
urgent, and at the same time more feasible, when we meet 
in India itself with systems claiming to be Vedantic and 
based on interpretations of the Sutras and Upanishads 
more or less differing from those of S'ankara. The claims 
of those systems to be in the possession of the right under- 
standing of the fundamental authorities of the Vedanta 
must at any rate be examined, even if we vshould finally be 
compelled to reject them. 

It appears that already at a very early period the 
Vedanta-shtras had come to be looked upon as an authori- 
tative work, not to be neglected by any who wished to 
affiliate their own doctrines to the Veda. At present, at 
any rate, there are very few Hindu sects not interested in 
showing that their distinctive tenets are countenanced by 
Badariya;^a’s teaching. Owing to this the commentaries 
on the Sutras have in the course of time become very 
numerous, and it is at present impossible to give a full and 
accurate enumeration even of those actually existing, much 
less of those referred to and quoted. Mr. Fitz-Edward 
Hall, in his Bibliographical Index, mentions fourteen com- 
mentaries, copies of which had been inspected by himself. 
Some among these (as, for instance, Rdrainu^a’s Ved&nta- 
s^ra, No. XXXV) are indeed not commentaries in the strict 
sense of the word, but rather systematic expositions of the 
doctrine supposed to be propounded in the Sutras ; but, on 
the other hand, there are in existence several true commen- 
taries which had not been accessible to Fitz-Edward Hall. 
It would hardly be practical — and certainly not feasible in 
this place — to submit all the existing bhashyas to a critical 
enquiry at once. All we can do here is to single out one or 
a few of the more important ones, and to compare their 
interpretations with those given by Xaiikara, and with the 
text of the Sutras themselves. 

The bhashya, which in this connexion is the first to press 
itself upon our attention, is the one composed by the famous 
Vaish;^/ava theologian and philosopher R^m^nu^a, who is 
supposed to have lived in the twelfth century. The Rdmi- 
nu^a or, as it is often called, the .Sri-bhashya appears to be 



INTRODUCTION. 


XVII 


the oldest commentary extant next to .Sankara’s. It is 
further to be noted that the sect of the RAmanu^as occupies 
a pre-eminent position among the Vaish?2ava sects which 
themselves, in their totality, may claim to be considered the 
most important among all Hindu sects. The intrinsic value 
of the 5 ri-bhashya moreover is — as every student ac- 
quainted with it will be ready to acknowledge — a very high 
one ; it strikes one throughout as a very solid performance 
due to a writer of extensive learning and great power of argu- 
mentation, and in its polemic parts, directed chiefly against 
the school of S'ahkara, it not unfrequently deserves to be 
called brilliant even. And in addition to all this it shows 
evident traces of being not the mere outcome of Ramanuja’s 
individual views, but of resting on an old and weighty 
tradition. 

This latter point is clearly of the greatest importance. 
If it could be demonstrated or even rendered probable only 
that the oldest bh^shya which we possess, i. e. the 6'an- 
kira-bhdshya, represents an uninterrupted and uniform 
tradition bridging over the interval between B^darayawa, 
the reputed author of the Sutras, and .Sankara ; and if, on 
the other hand, it could be shown that the more modern 
bhishyas are not supported by old tradition, but are 
nothing more than bold attempts of clever sectarians to 
.force an old work of generally recognised authority into 
the service of their individual tenets ; there would certainly 
be no reason for us to raise the question whether the later 
bh^shyas can help us in making out the true meaning of 
the Sutras. All we should have to do in that case would be 
to accept S'ahkara’s interpretations as they stand, or at the 
utmost to attempt to make out, if at all possible, by a 
careful comparison of 6'ahkara’s bhdshya with the text of 
the Sutras, whether the former in all cases faithfully repre- 
sents the purport of the latter. 

In the most recent book of note which at all enters into the 
question as to how far we have to accept S'ahkara as a guide 
to the right understanding of the Sfltras (Mr. A. Gough’s 
Philosophy of the Upanishads) the view is maintained (pp. 
239 ff.) that 6'ankara is the generally recognised expositor 
[ 34 ] b 



XVlll 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


of true Vedanta doctrine, that that doctrinQ was handed 
down by an unbroken series of teachers intervening between 
him and the Shtrakara, and that there existed from the 
beginning only one Vedanta doctrine, agreeing in all essen- 
tial points with the doctrine known to us from Sankara’s 
writings. Mr. Gough undertakes to prove this view, firstly, 
by a comparison of Sankara’s system with the teaching of 
the Upanishads themselves ; and, secondly, by a comparison 
of the purport of the Sutras — as far as that can be made 
out independently of the commentaries — with the interpre- 
tations given of them by Gahkara. To both these points 
we shall revert later on. Meanwhile, I only wish to remark 
concerning the former point that, even if we could show 
with certainty that all the Upanishads propound one and 
the same doctrine, there yet remains the undeniable fact of 
our being confronted by a considerable number of essen- 
tially differing theories, all of which claim to be founded on 
the Upanishads. And with regard to the latter point I 
have to say for the present that, as long as we have 
only vSahkara’s bhashya before us, we are naturally 
inclined to find in the Sutras — which, taken by them- 
selves, are for the greater part unintelligible — the meaning 
which ^Sankara ascribes to them ; while a reference to 
other bhashyas may not impossibly change our views at 
once. — Meanwhile, we will consider the question as to the 
unbroken uniformity of Vedantic tradition from another 
point of view, viz. by enquiring whether or not the 
Sutras themselves, and the .Sahkara-bhashya, furnish any 
indications of there having existed alreadj;^ at an early time 
essentially different Vedantic systems or lines of Vedantic 
speculation. 

Beginning with the Sutras, we find that they supply ample 
evidence to the effect that already at a very early time, 
viz. the period antecedent to the final composition of the 
Vedanta-sutras in their present shape, there had arisen 
among the chief doctors of the Veddnta differences of 
opinion, bearing not only upon minor points of doctrine, 
but affecting the most essential parts of the system. In 
addition to B^dardya;/a himself, the reputed author of the 



INTRODUCTION. 


XIX 


Siitras, the latter quote opinions ascribed to the following 
teachers : Atreya, Airnarathya, Au^ulorai, Karsh;/a^ini, 
Ka^yakn’tsna, ^faimini, Badari. Among the passages where 
diverging views of those teachers are recorded and con- 
trasted three are of particular importance. Firstly, a 
passage in the fourth pada of the fourth adhyiya (Sutras 5-7), 
where the opinions of various teachers concerning the 
characteristics of the released soul are given, and where the 
important discrepancy is noted that, according to Au^/ulomi, 
its only characteristic is thought (/^aitanya), while 6^aimini 
maintains that it possesses a number of exalted qualities, and 
B^dardya^M declares himself in favour of a combination of 
those two views. — The second passage occurs in the third 
pada of the fourth adhyaya (Sutras 7-14), where 6^aimini 
maintains that the soul of him who possesses the lower know- 
ledge of Brahman goes after death to the highest Brahman, 
while Badari — whose opinion is endorsed by Fahkara — 
teaches that it repairs to the lower Brahman only. — Finally, 
the third and most important passage is met with in the 
fourth pada of the first adhyaya (Sutras 20-33), where the 
question is discussed why in a certain passage of the 
B^fhadara??yaka Brahman is referred to in terms which are 
strictly applicable to the individual soul only. In con- 
nexion therewith the Sutras quote the views of three ancient 
teachers about the relation in which the individual soul 
stands to Brahman. According to Ai-marathya (if we 
accept the interpretation of his view given by Fahkara and 
6'ahkara’s commentators) the soul stands to Brahman in 
the bhedabheda relation, i.e. it is neither absolutely different 
nor absolutely non-different from it, as sparks are from fire. 
Aucfulomi, on the other hand, teaches that the soul is alto- 
gether different from Brahman up to the time when ob- 
taining final release it is merged in it ; and Ka^akrftsna 
finally upholds the doctrine that the soul is absolutely non- 
different from Brahman, which in some way or other 
presents itself as the individual soul. 

That the ancient teachers, the ripest outcome of whose 
speculations and discussions is embodied in the Vedanta- 
SLitras, disagreed among themselves on points of vital 

b 2 



XX 


vedInta-s-Dtras. 


importance is sufficiently proved by the three passages 
quoted. The one quoted last is specially significant as 
showing that recognised authorities — deemed worthy of 
being quoted in the Sutras — denied that doctrine on which 
the whole system of 5ankara hinges, viz. the doctrine of 
the absolute identity of the individual soul with Brahman. 

Turning next to the .Sankara-bhashya itself, we there 
also meet with indications that the Vedantins were divided 
among themselves on important points of dogma. These 
indications are indeed not numerous : .Sankara does not on 
the whole impress one as an author particularly anxious to 
strengthen his own case by appeals to ancient authorities, a 
peculiarity of his which later writers of hostile tendencies 
have not failed to remark and criticise. But yet more than 
once Sankara also refers to the opinion of ‘ another,’ viz., 
commentator of the Sfitras, and in several places Sankara’s 
commentators explain that the ‘ other ’ meant is the VritM- 
kara (about whom more will be said shortly). Those 
references as a rule concern minor points of exegesis, and 
hence throw little or no light on important differences of 
dogma; but there are two remarks of 6 'ahkara’s at any 
rate which are of interest in this connexion. The one is 
made with reference to Sutras 7“i4 of the third p^da 
of the fourth adhydya ; ‘ some,’ he says there, ‘ declare those' 
Siitras, which I look upon as setting forth the siddhanta 
view, to state merely the pfirvapaksha ; ’ a difference of 
opinion which, as We have seen above, affects the important 
question as to the ultimate fate of those who have not 
reached the knowledge of the highest Brahman. — And 
under I, 3 , 19 S'ankara, after having explained at length 
that the individual soul as such cannot claim any reality, 
but is real only in so far as it is identical with Brahman, 
adds the following words, ‘ apare tu vadina/^ paramdrthikam 
eva ^aiva?;^ rupam iti manyante asraadiydj- /^a ke/^it,’ i. e. 

‘ other theorisers again, and among them some of ours, are of 
opinion that the individual soul as such is real.’ The term 
‘ ours,’ here made use of, can denote only the Aupanishadas 
or Vedantins, and it thus appears that 6 'ankara himself 


INTRODUCTION. 


XXI 


was willing to class under the same category himself and 
philosophers who — as in later times the Ramanujas and 
others — looked upon the individual soul as not due to the 
fictitious limitations of Maya, but as real in itself ; whatever 
may be the relation in which the}'’ considered it to stand 
to the highest Self. 

From what precedes it follows that the Vedantins of the 
school to which S'ahkara himself belonged acknowledged 
the existence of Vedantic teaching of a type essentially 
different from their own. We must now proceed to enquire 
whether the Ramanuja system, which likewise claims to be 
Vedanta, and to be founded on the Vedanta-suti'as, has any 
title to be considered an ancient system and the heir of a 
respectable tradition. 

It appears that Ram^nug*a claims — and by Hindu writers 
is generally admitted — to follow in his bhashya the autho- 
rity of Bodhdyana, who had composed a vntti on the 
Sutras. Thus we read in the beginning of the S'ri-bh^shya 
(PaWit, New Series, VII, p. 163), ‘ Bhagavad-bodhdyana- 
krittin vistiiv^am brahmasfitra-vr/tti?;2 purva/i’drya/^ saw/^i- 
kshipus tanmatanusdrewa sutrdkshara^d vyakhyasyante.’ 
Whether the Bodhayana to whom that vrftti is ascribed is to 
be identified with the author of the Kalpa-sutra, and other 
works, cannot at present be decided. But that an ancient vrzVd 
on the Sutras connected with Bodhdy ana’s name actually 
existed, there is not any reason to doubt. Short quotations 
from it are met with in a few places of the vS’n-bhdshya,and, 
as we have seen above, Nahkara’s commentators state that 
their author’s polemical remarks are directed against the 
Vrfttikdra. In addition to Bodhayana, Ramanu^ appeals to 
quite a series of ancient teachers — purvd/jdryas — who carried 
on the true tradition as to the teaching of the Veddnta and 
the meaning of the Sutras. In the Veddrthasangraha 
— a work composed by Ramanuja himself— -we meet in one 
place with the enumeration of the following authorities : 
Bodhayana, Fahka, Drami^/a, Guhadeva, Kapardin, Bharu/f’i, 
and quotations from the writings of some of these are not 
imfrequent in the Vedarthasangraha, as well as the Nri- 



XXII 


vedanta-sOtras. 


bhashya. The author most frequently quoted is Drami^/a 
who composed the Dramiflh-bhashya ; he is sometimes 
referred to as the bhashyakara. Another writer repeatedly 
quoted as the vM<yakara is, I am told to be identified with 
the Tanka mentioned above, I refrain from inserting in 
this place the information concerning the relative age of 
these writers which may be derived from the oral tradition 
of the Ramanii^ sect. From another source, however, we 
receive an intimation that DramiTaMrya or DraviTaMrya 
preceded Fankara in point of time. In his ^ika on 5an- 
kara’s bhashya to the TT/^andogya Upanishad III, lo, 4, 
Anandagiri remarks that the attempt made by his author to 
reconcile the cosmological views of the Upanishad with the 
teaching of Smrfti on the same point is a reproduction of 
the analogous attempt made by the DraviTaidrya. 

It thus appears that that special interpretation of the 
Vedanta-sutras with which the FrkbhEishya makes us 
acquainted is not due to innovating views on the part of 
Ramanug-a, but had authoritative representatives already 
at a period anterior to that of Sankara. This latter point, 
moreover, receives additional confirmation from the relation 
in which the so-called Ramanug-a sect stands to earlier 
sects. What the exact position of Ram^nug-a was, and of 
what nature were the reforms that rendered him so pro- 
minent as to give his name to a new sect, is not exactly 
known at present ; at the same time it is generally acknow- 
ledged that the Rdindnug-as are closely connected with the 
so-called Bhdgavatas or Pi«/^ardtras, who are known to 
have existed already at a very early time. This latter point 
is proved by evidenceof various kinds; for our present purpose 
it suffices to point to the fact that, according to the interpre- 
tation of the most authoritative commentators, the last 

1 The name of this writer is sometimes given as Dramiah, sometimes as 
Dravififa. In the opinion of V&ndii Rttma Mirra ri’^strin of the Benares 
College -himself a Ramanuja and thoroughly conversant with the books and 
traditions of his sect— the form ‘Drarairfa’ is the correct one. 

“ Viz. by Pa/ 24 il Rama Mirra Aastrin. As the Va.ndit intends himself to 
publish all the traditional information he possesses concerning the history of 
the Bhagavatas and Ramanujas, I limit myself in the text to stating the most 
relevant results of my study of the Arr'bhashya and the Vedarthasahgiaha, 



INTRODUCTION. 


XXlll 


Sutras of the second pada of the second adhyaya (Vedanta- 
sutras) refer to a distinctive tenet of the Bhagavatas — which 
tenet forms part of the Rdmanu^a system also — viz. that 
the highest being manifests itself in a fourfold form (vyuha) 
as VasLideva, Sahkarsha/^a, Pradyumna, Anirucldhaj those 
four forms being identical with the highest Self, the indi- 
vidual soul, the internal organ (manas), and the principle 
of egoity (ahahkara). Whether those Sutras embody an 
approval of the tenet referred to, as Ramaniig-a maintains, 
or are meant to impugn it, as S'ahkara thinks ; so much is 
certain that in the opinion of the best commentators the 
Bhagavatas, the direct forerunners of the Ramanu^’as, are 
mentioned in the Stitras themselves, and hence must not 
only have existed, but even reached a considerable degree 
of importance at the time when the Sutras were composed. 
And considering the general agreement of the systems of 
the earlier Bhagavatas and the later Rdmanu^as, we have 
a full right to suppose that the two sects were at one also 
in their mode of interpreting the Vedanta-sutras. 

The preceding considerations suffice, I am inclined to 
think, to show that it will by no means be wasted labour to 
enquire how Ramdnu^a interprets the Sutras, and wherein 
he differs from S'ahkara. This in fact seems clearly to be 
the first step we have to take, if we wish to make an attempt 
at least of advancing beyond the interpretations of scho- 
liasts to the meaning of the Sutras themselves. A full and 
exhaustive comparison of the views of the two com- 
mentators would indeed far exceed the limits of the space 
which can here be devoted to that task, and will, moreover, 
be made with greater ease and advantage when the complete 
Sanskrit text of the S’ri-bhashya has been printed, and thus 
made available for general reference. But meanwhile it is 
possible, and— ’as said before — even urged upon a translator 
of the Sutras to compare the interpretations, given by the 
two bhashyakaras, of those Sutras, which, more than others, 
touch on the essential points of the Vedanta system This 

1 Owing to the importance of the .^ahkara-bhEisliya as the fundamental work 
of the most influential Hindu school of philosophy, the number of topics which 
might be discussed in the introduction to its translation is considerable. But 




XXIV 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


will best be done in connexion with a succinct but full 
review of the topics discussed in the adhikara;/as of the 
Vedanta-SLitras, according to Sankara ; a review which — 
apart from the side-glances at Ramann^’'a’s comments — 
will be useful as a guide through the Sutras and the 
vSniikara-bhashya. Before, however, entering on that 
task, I think it advisable to insert short sketches of the 
philosophical systems of vSahkara as well as of Ramdnu^a, 
which may be referred to when, later on, discrepancies 
between the two commentators will be noted. In these 
sketches I shall confine myself to the leading features, and 
not enter into any details. Of S'ankara’s system we possess 
as it is more than one trustworthy exposition ; it may 
suffice to refer to Deussen’s System of the Vedanta, in 
which the details of the entire system, as far as they can be 
learned from the Sutra-bhashya, are represented fully and 
faithfully, and to Gough’s Philosophy of the Upanishads 
which, principally in its second chapter, gives a lucid 
sketch of the S'dnkara Vedanta, founded on the Sutra- 
bhashya, the Upanishad bh^shyas, and some later writers 
belonging to S'ankara’s school. With regard to Rdm^nu^-a’s 
philosophy our chief source was, hitherto, the Rim^nu^a 
chapter in the Sarvadarj'a7/asa;;^graha ; the short sketch 
about to be given is founded altogether on the Sii- 
bhashya itself. 

What in ^Sankara’s opinion the Upanishads teach, is 
shortly as follows. — Whatever is, is in reality one ; there 
truly exists only one universal being called Brahman or 
Paramitman, the highest Self This being is of an abso- 
lutely homogeneous nature; it is pure 'Being,’ or, which 
comes to the same, pure intelligence or thought (-^aitanya, 


the limitation of the space at our disposal necessitates a selection, and it can 
baldly be doubted that, among the possible tasks of a translator, that of 
ascertaining how far the teaching of Aahkara agrees with that of Badaraya?m, 
and, further, how far either of them represents the true doctrine of the 
Upanishads, is the one first to be taken in hand.— Some othei topics, such as a 
detailed account of .Sahlcaia’s teaching according to the bhasliya, an enquiry as 
to the books and authois quoted by Aankara, &c., have, moreover, been treated 
not long ago in a very thorough fashion by Dr. Deussen in his ‘ System des 
Vedanta.’ 




INTRODUCTION. 


XXV 


gutn^). Intelligence or thought is not to be predicated of 
Brahman as its attribute, but constitutes its substance ; 
Brahman is not a thinking being, but thought itself. It 
is absolutely destitute of qualities; whatever qualities or 
attributes are conceivable, can only be denied of it. — But, 
if nothing exists but one absolutely simple being, whence 
the appearance of the world by which we see ourselves 
surrounded, and in which we ourselves exist as individual 
beings? — Brahman, the answer runs, is associated with a 
certain power called Maya or avidya to which the appearance 
of this entire world is due. This power cannot be called 
‘ being ’ (sat), for ‘ being ’ is only Brahman ; nor can it be 
called ' non-being ’ (asat) in the strict sense, for it at any rate 
produces the appearance of this world. It is in fact a prin- 
ciple of illusion ; the undefinable cause owing to which there 
seems to exist a material world comprehending distinct 
individual existences. Being associated with this principle 
of illusion, Brahman is enabled to project the appearance of 
the world, in the same way as a magician is enabled by his 
incomprehensible magical power to produce illusory ap- 
pearances of animate and inanimate beings. Mayd thus 
constitutes the upaddna, the material cause of the world ; or 
— if we wish to call attention to the circumstance that 
Maya belongs to Brahman as a jakti — we may say that 
the material cause of the world is Brahman in so far as it 
is associated with Maya. In this latter quality Brahman is 
more properly called Ijvara, the Lord. 

Miyd, under the guidance of the Lord, modifies itself by 
a progressive evolution into all the individual existences 
(bheda), distinguished by special names and forms, of 
which the world consists ; from it there spring in due 
succession the different material elements and the whole 
bodily apparatus belonging to sentient beings. In all 
those apparently individual forms of existence the one 
indivisible Brahman is present, but, owing to -the particular 
adjuncts into which Mayd has specialised itself, it appears 
to be broken up — it is broken up, as it were — into a multi- 
plicity of intellectual or sentient principles, the so-called 
^ivas (individual or personal souls). What is real in each 



XXVI 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


^iva is only the universal Brahman itself ; the whole 
aggregate of individualising bodily organs and mental 
functions, which in our ordinary experience separate and 
distinguish one^iva from another, is the offspring of Mayi 
and as such unreal. 

The phenomenal world or world of ordinary experience 
(vyavahara) thus consists of a number of individual souls 
engaged in specific cognitions, volitions, and so on, and of 
the external material objects with which those cognitions 
and volitions are concerned. Neither the specific cognitions 
nor their objects are real in the true sense of the word, 
for both are altogether due to Maya, But at the same 
time we have to reject the idealistic doctrine of certain 
Bauddha schools according to which nothing whatever 
truly exists, but certain trains of cognitional acts or ideas 
to which no external objects correspond; for external 
things, although not real in the strict sense of the word, 
enjoy at any rate as much reality as the specific cognitional 
acts whose objects they are. 

The non-enlightened soul is unable to look through and 
beyond Mayd, which, like a veil, hides from it its true 
nature. Instead of recognising itself to be Brahman, it 
blindly identifies itself with its adjuncts (upddhi), the’ 
fictitious offspring of Mayi, and thus looks for its true 
Self in the body, the sense organs, and the internal organ 
(manas), i.e. the organ of specific cognition. The soul, 
which in reality is pure intelligence, non-active, infinite, 
thus becomes limited in extent, as it were, limited in 
knowledge and power, an agent and enjoyer. Through 
its actions it burdens itself with merit and demerit, the 
consequences of which it has to bear or enjoy in series of 
future embodied existences, the Lord— as a retributor and 
dispenser— allotting to each soul that form of embodiment 
to which it is entitled by its previous actions. At the end 
of each of the great world periods called kalpas the Lord 
retracts the whole world, i.e. the whole material world is 
dissolved and merged into non-distiuct Mayd, while the 
individual souls, free for the time from actual connexion 
with up^dhis, lie in deep slumber as it were. But as the 



INTRODUCTION. 


XXVII 


consequences of their former deeds are not yet exhausted, 
they have again to enter on embodied existence as soon as 
the Lord sends forth a new material world, and the old 
round of birth, action, death begins anew to last to all 
eternity as it has lasted from all eternity. 

The means of escaping from this endless sawsara, the way 
out of which can never be found by the non-enlightened 
soul, are furnished by the Veda. The karmaka^^hh indeed, 
whose purport it is to enjoin certain actions, cannot lead 
to final release ; for even the most meritorious works 
necessarily lead to new forms of embodied existence. And 
in the ^-nknakknda. of the Veda also two different parts 
have to be distinguished, viz., firstly, those chapters and 
passages which treat of Brahman in so far as related to the 
world, and hence characterised by various attributes, i. e. of 
li'vara or the lower Brahman ; and, secondly, those texts 
which set forth the nature of the highest Brahman tran- 
scending all qualities, and the fundamental identity of the 
individual soul with that highest Brahman. Devout medi- 
tation on Brahman as suggested by passages of the former 
kind does not directly lead to final emancipation ; the 
pious worshipper passes on his death into the world of 
the lower Brahman only, where he continues to exist as 
a distinct individual soul — although in the enjoyment of 
great power and knowledge — until at last he reaches the 
highest knowledge, and, through it, final release. — That 
student of the Veda, on the other hand, whose soul has 
been enlightened by the texts embodying the higher know- 
ledge of Brahman, whom passages such as the great saying, 
‘That art thou,’ have taught that there is no difference 
between his true Self and the highest Self, obtains at the 
moment of death immediate final release, i. e. he withdraws 
altogether from the influence of Maya, and asserts himself 
in his true nature, which is nothing else but the absolute 
highest Brahman. 

Thus Vankara. — According to Ramanuja, on the other 
hand, the teaching of the Upanishads has to be summarised 
as follows. — There exists only one all-embracing being called 
Brahman or the highest Self or the Lord. This being is 



XXVlll 


vedanta-s6tras. 


not destitute of attributes, but rather endowed with all 
imaginable auspicious qualities. It is not ‘ intelligence/ — as 
6'ahkara maintains, — but intelligence is its chief attribute. 
The Lord is all-pervading, all-powerful, all-knowing, all- 
merciful ; his nature is fundamentally antagonistic to all evil. 
He contains within himself whatever exists. While, accord- 
ing to .Sankara, the only reality is to be found in the non- 
qualified homogeneous highest Brahman which can only be 
defined as pure ‘ Being ^ or pure thought, all plurality being a 
mere illusion ; Brahman — according to Ramdnu^a’s view — 
comprises within itself distinct elements of plurality which 
all of them lay claim to absolute reality of one and the same 
kind. Whatever is presented to us by ordinary experience, 
viz. matter in all its various modifications and the individual 
souls of different classes and degrees, are essential real 
constituents of Brahman’s nature. Matter and souls (a/^it 
and i^it) constitute, according to Rdmanu^a’s terminology, 
the body of the Lord; they stand to him in the same 
relation of entire dependence and subserviency in which 
the matter forming an animal or vegetable body stands to 
its soul or animating principle. The Lord pervades and 
rules all things which exist — material or immaterial — as 
their antaryamin ; the fundamental text for this special 
Rdmanu^a tenet — which in the writings of the sect is 
quoted again and again — is the so-called antaryamin brdh- 
mawa (Brf. Up. Ill, 7) which says, that within all elements, 
all sense organs, and, lastly, within all individual souls, 
there abides an inward ruler whose body those elements, 
sense-organs, and individual souls constitute. — Matter and 
souls as forming the body of the Lord are also called 
modes of him (prakara). They are to be looked upon as his 
effects, but they have enjoyed the kind of individual exist- 
ence which is theirs from all eternity, and will never be 
entirely resolved into Brahman. They, however, exist in 
two different, periodically alternating, conditions. At some 
times they exist in a subtle state in which they do not 
possess those qualities by which they are ordinarily known, 
and there is then no distinction of individual name and 
form. Matter in that state is unevolved (avyakta) ; the 



INTRODUCTION. 


XXIX 


individual souls are not joined to material bodies, and their 
intelligence is in a state of contraction, non-manifestation 
(sahko^a). This is the pralaya state which recurs at the end 
of each kalpa, and Brahman is then said to be in its causal 
condition (kara^ivastha). To that state all those scriptural 
passages refer which speak of Brahman or the Self as 
being in the beginning one only, without a second. Brahman 
then is indeed not absolutely one, for it contains within itself 
matter and souls in a germinal condition ; but as in that 
condition they are so subtle as not to allow of individual 
distinctions being made, they are not counted as something 
second in addition to Brahman. — When the pralaya state 
comes to an end, creation takes place owing to an act of 
volition on the Lord's part. Primary unevolved matter then 
passes over into its other condition ; it becomes gross and 
thus acquires all those sensible attributes, visibility, tangi- 
bility, and so on, which are known from ordinary experience. 
At the same time the souls enter into connexion with 
material bodies corresponding to the degree of merit or 
demerit acquired by them in previous forms of existence ; 
their intelligence at the same time undergoes a certain 
expansion (vik^ja). The Lord, together with matter in its 
gross state and the ‘ expanded ’ souls, is Brahman in the 
condition of an effect (k^rydvasthd). Cause and effect are 
thus at the bottom the same ; for the effect is nothing but 
the cause which has undergone a certain change (pari- 
«ama). Hence the cause being known, the effect is known 
likewise. 

Owing to the effects of their former actions the indi- 
vidual souls are implicated in the sawsara, the endless 
cycle of birth, action, and death, final escape from which 
is to be obtained only through the study of the ^«^na- 
ka^zffa of the Veda. Compliance with the injunctions of 
the karmaki«(;fa does not lead outside the sa?;«sara; but 
he who, assisted by the grace of the Lord, cognizes — and 
meditates on — him in the way prescribed by the Upani- 
shads reaches at his death final emancipation, i.e, he 
passes through the different stages of the path of the 
gods up to the world of Brahman and there enjoys an 



XXX 


VEDANTA-Sl^JTRAS. 


everlasting blissful existence from which there is no re- 
turn into the sphere of transmigration. The character- 
istics of the released soul are similar to those of Brahman ; 
it participates in all the latter’s glorious qualities and 
powers, excepting only Brahman’s power to emit, rule, and 
retract the entire world. 

The chief points in which the two systems sketched 
above agree on the one hand and diverge on the other 
may be shortly stated as follows. — Both systems teach 
advaita, i.e. non-duality or monism. There exist not 
several fundamentally distinct principles, such as the pra- 
kn’ti and the purushas of the Sahkhyas, but there exists 
only one all-embracing being. While, however, the advaita 
taught by 5ahkara is a rigorous, absolute one, Ramanu^’s 
doctrine has to be characterised as vi^ishifa advaita, i.e. 
qualified non-duality, non-duality with a difference. Ac- 
cording to .Sankara, whatever is, is Brahman, and Brahman 
itself is absolutely homogeneous, so that all difference and 
plurality must be illusory. According to Rimanu^-a also, 
whatever is, is Brahman ; but Brahman is not of a homo- 
geneous nature, but contains within itself elements of 
plurality owing to which it truly manifests itself in a 
diversified world. The world with its variety of material 
forms of existence and individual souls is not unreal Miyd, 
but a real part of Brahman’s nature, the body investing 
the universal Self. The Brahman of JJahkara is in itself 
impersonal, a homogeneous mass of objectless thought, 
transcending all attributes ; a personal God it becomes 
only through its association with the unreal principle of 
Mdy^, so that — strictly speaking — Sankara’s personal God, 
his 1 jvara, is himself something unreal. Ram^nu^’s Brah- 
man, on the other hand, is essentially a personal God, the 
all-powerful and all-wise ruler of a real world permeated 
and animated by his spirit. There is thus no room for 
the distinction between a param nirguwam and an apara?;^ 
sagu?^am brahma, between Brahman and Ijvara. — v^an- 
kara’s individual soul is Brahman in so far as limited by 
the unreal upidhis due to Mdya. The individual soul of 
R^manu^a, on the other hand, is really individual ; it has 



INTRODUCTION. 


XXXI 


indeed sprung from Brahman and is never outside Brah- 
man, but nevertheless it enjoys a separate personal exist- 
ence and will remain a personality for ever. — The release 
from sawsara means, according to 6'ahkara, the absolute 
merging of the individual soul in Brahman, due to the dis- 
missal of the erroneous notion that the soul is distinct 
from Brahman ; according to Ramanuja it only means 
the soul’s passing from the troubles of earthly life into 
a kind of heaven or paradise where it will remain for ever 
in undisturbed personal bliss. — As Ramanuja does not 
distinguish a higher and lower Brahman, the distinction 
of a higher and lower knowledge is likewise not valid for 
him; the teaching of the Upanishads is not twofold but 
essentially one, and leads the enlightened devotee to one 
result onlyk 

I now proceed to give a conspectus of the contents 
of the Ved^nta-shtras according to .Sankara in which at the 
same time all the more important points concerning which 
R^m^nu^a disagrees will be noted. We shall here have to 
enter into details which to many may appear tedious. But it 
is only on a broad substratum of accurately stated details that 
we can hope to establish any definite conclusions regarding 
the comparative value of the different modes of interpreta- 
tion which have been applied to the Sutras. The line of 
investigation is an entirely new one, and for the present 
nothing can be taken for granted or known. — In stating the 
different heads of discussion (the so-called adhikara/ 2 as), 
each of which comprises one or more Sutras, I shall follow 
the subdivision into adhikara^^as adopted in the Vyis^dhika- 
rawamila, the text of which is printed in the second volume 
of the Bibliotheca Indica edition of the Siltras. 


^ The only ‘sectarian’ featme of the Ai-bh&shya is, that it identifies Brahman 
with Vishwu or Narayawa; but this in no way affects the interpretations put on 
the Siltras and Upanishads. Narayawa is in fact nothing but another name of 
Brahman. 



XXXI 1 


vedanta-s'Otras. 


FIRST ADHYAYA. 

Pad A I. 

The first five adhikarawas lay down the fundamental 
positions with regard to Brahman. Adhik. I (i)^ treats of 
what the study of the Vedanta presupposes. Adhik. II 
(%) defines Brahman as that whence the world originates, 
and so on. Adhik. Ill (3) declares that Brahman is the 
source of the Veda. Adhik. IV (4) proves Brahman to be 
the uniform topic of all Vedanta-texts. Adhik. V (5-1 1) 
is engaged in proving by various arguments that the Brah- 
man, which the Vedanta-texts represent as the cause of 
the world, is an intelligent principle, and cannot be iden- 
tified with the non-intelligent pradhana from which the 
world springs according to the Sinkhyas. 

With the next adhikara;2a there begins a series of dis- 
cussions of essentially similar character, extending up to 
the end of the first adhydya. The question is throughout 
whether certain terms met with in the Upanishads denote 
Brahman or some other being, in most cases the ^iva, the 
individual soul. 6'ankara remarks at the outset that, as the 
preceding ten Sutras had settled the all-important point 
that all the Vedanta-texts "refer to Brahman, the question 
now arises why the enquiry should be continued any fur- 
ther, and thereupon proceeds to explain that the acknow- 
ledged distinction of a higher Brahman devoid of all 
qualities and a lower Brahman characterised by qualities 
necessitates an investigation whether certain Vedic texts 
of prima facie doubtful import set forth the lower Brah- 
man as the object of devout meditation, or the higher 
Brahman as the object of true knowledge. But that such an 
investigation is actually carried on in the remaining portion 
of the first adhyiya, appears neither from the wording of the 
Sutras nor even from Yankara’s own treatment of the Vedic 


1 The Roman numerals indicate the number of the adhikara«a ; the figures 
in parentheses state the Sutras comprised in each adhikarawa. 



INTRODUCTION. 


XXXlll 


texts referred to in the Shtras. In I, i, ao, for instance, the 
question is raised whether the golden man within the sphere 
of the sun, with golden hair and beard and lotus-coloured 
eyes — of whom the /f/zdndogya Upanishad speaks in 1 , 6 , 6 
— is an individual soul abiding within the sun or the 
highest Lord. .Sahkara^s answer is that the passage refers 
to the Lord, who, for the gratification of his worshippers, 
manifests himself in a bodily shape made of Maya. So that 
according to S'aiikara himself the alternative lies between 
the sagu^^a Brahman and some particular individual soul, not 
between the sagu;2a Brahman and the nirgU 72 a Brahman, 
Adhik. VI (12-19) raises the question whether the inanda- 
maya, mentioned in Taittiriya Upanishad II, 5, is merely 
a transmigrating individual soul or the highest Self. S’an- 
kara begins by explaining the Sutras on the latter suppo- 
sition — and the text of the Sutras is certainly in favour of 
that interpretation — gives, however, finally the preference to 
a different and exceedingly forced explanation according to 
which the Sutras teach that the anandamaya is not Brah- 
man, since the Upanishad expressly says that Brahman is 
the tail or support of the dnandamaya — Ramanuja’s in- 
terpretation of Adhikarawa VI, although not agreeing in 
all particulars with the former explanation of S'aiikara, yet 
is at one with it in the chief point, viz. that the ananda- 
maya is Brahman. It further deserves notice that, w^hile 
S’ankara looks on Adhik. VI as the first of a series of 
interpretatory discussions, all of which treat the question 
whether certain Vedic passages refer to Brahman or not, 
Rdmanuja separates the adhikara^za from the subsequent 
part of the pdda and connects it with what had preceded. 
In Adhik. V it had been shown that Brahman cannot be 


^ Deussen’s supposition (pp. 30, 150) that the passage conveying the second 
inteipretation is an interpolation is liable to two objections. In the fiist place, 
the passage is accepted and explained by all commentators j in the second 
place, .Sankara in the passage immediately preceding SCitra 12 quotes the 
adhikara?2a ‘ auandamayo sbhydsat’ as giving rise to a discussion whether the 
param or the aparam brahman is meant. Now this latter point is not touched 
upon at all in that part of the bhashya which sets forth the former explanation, 
but only in the subsequent passage, which refutes the former and advocates the 
latter interpretation. 

t 34 ] 


c 




XXXIV 


vedanta-sOtras. 


identified with the pradhana ; Adhik. VI shows that it is 
different from the individual soul, and the proof of the 
fundamental position of the system is thereby completed h — 
Adhik. VII (20, 21) demonstrates that the golden person 
seen within the sun and the person seen within the eye, 
mentioned in Kh. Up. I, 6, are not some individual soul 
of high eminence, but the supreme Brahman. — Adhik. VIII 
(22) teaches that by the ether from which, according to 
Kh. Up. I, 9, all beings originate, not the elemental ether 
has to be understood but the highest Brahman. — Adhik. 
IX (23). The prdwa also mentioned in Kh. Up. I, 11, 5 
denotes the highest Brahman — Adhik. X (24-27) teaches 
that the light spoken of in Kh. Up. Ill, 13, 7 is not the 
ordinary physical light but the highest Brahman ^ — Adhik. 
XI (28-31) decides that the pr^;^a mentioned in Kau. Up. 
Ill, 2 is Brahman. 


PAda II. 

Adhik. I (1-8) shows that the being which consists of 
mind, whose body is breath, &c., mentioned in Kh. Up. 
Ill, 14, is not the individual soul, but Brahman. The 
Sfitras of this adhikara;^a emphatically dwell on the dif- 
ference of the individual soul and the highest Self, whence 
vSankara is obliged to add an explanation — in his comment 
on Sutra 6 — to the effect that that difference is to be under- 
stood as not real, but as due to the false limiting adjuncts 
of the highest Self. — The comment of R^mdnu^a thi'ough- 
out closely follows the words of the Sfitras ; on Sfitra 6 
it simply remarks that the difference of the highest Self 


1 Evaw ^kwasitasya brahmawaj /Setanabhogyabhilta^a^ferupasattvara^astamo- 
mayapradhan§.d vyavnttir uktd, idant;« karmavajydt trigu?iatmakaprak«ti- 
sawsarganimittanandvidhdnanladukhasagaranima^anena niddhdZ’ / 5 a pratya- 
gatmanoinyan nikhilabeyapratyanika/'/^ niratijayanandam brahmeti pratipa- 
dyate, anandamayo^bhyasdt. 

2 There is no reason to consider the passage ‘atra ke/ 5 it’ in Aahkara’s 
bhashya on Sutra 23 an interpolation as Deiissen does (p. 30). It simply 
contains a criticism passed by d'ahkara on other commentators, 

s To the passages on pp. 150 and 153 of the Sanskrit text, -vvliich Deussen 
thinks to be interpolations, there likewise applies the remark made in the 
preceding note. 




INTRODUCTION. 


XXXV 


from the individual soul rests thereon that the former 
as free from all evil is not subject to the effects of works 
in the same way as the soul is — Adhik. II (9, 10) decides 
that he to whom the Brahmans and Kshattriyas are but 
food (Ka^/m Up. I, a, 35) is the highest Self. — Adhik. Ill 
(ii, 12) shows that the two entered into the cave (Ka^/ia. 
Up. I, 3, i) are Brahman and the individual souU. — Adhik. 
IV (13-17) shows that the person within the eye mentioned 
in Kli. Up. IV, 15, I is Brahman. — Adhik. V (18-20) shows 
that the ruler within (antarydmin) described in Brf. Up. Ill, 
7, 3 is Brahman. Sutra 20 clearly enounces the difference 
of the individual soul and the Lord ; hence S'ahkara is 
obliged to remark that that difference is not real. — Adhik. 

VI (21-23) proves that that which cannot be seen, &C.5 
mentioned in Mu/z^^aka Up. I, i, 3 is Brahman. — Adhik. 

VII (24-32) shows that the atman vaUvanara oiKh. Up. V, 
II, 6 is Brahman. 

PAda III. 

Adhik. I (r-7) proves that that within which the heaven, 
the earth, &c. are woven (Mu;^^;?. Up. II, 2, 5) is Brahman.-— 
Adhik. II (8, 9) shows that the bhhman referred to in Kh. 
Up. VII, 23 is Brahman. — Adhik. Ill (10-12) teaches that 
the Imperishable in which, according to Brf. Up. Ill, 8, 8, 
the ether is woven is Brahman. — Adhik. IV (13) decides 
that the highest person who is to be meditated upon with 
the syllable Om, according to Prama Up. V, 5, is not the 

^ G^vasya iva parasyapi brahma/^a^ jarirantarvartitvam abhyupagataw k&t 
tadvad eva Jarirasambandbaprayuktasukhadukhopabhogapraptir iti /cea na, 
hetuvaijeshyat, na hi ^aiirantarvartitvam eva sukhadukhopabhogahetu <4 api 
tu pu?^yapaparupakarmaparava^atva;« ta<^ ;5dpahatapapmana/i paramatmano 
na sambhavati. 

® The second interpretation given on pp. 184-5 of the Sanskrit text (beginning 
with apara dha) Deussen considers to be an interpolation, caused by the 
reference to the Paihgi-upanishad in S'ahkaia’s comment on I, 3, y (p. 233). 
But there is no reason whatever for such an assumption. The i^assage on 
p. 232 shows that -Sankara considered the explanation of the mantra given in 
the Paingi-upanishad worth quoting, and is in fact fully intelligible only in case 
of its having been quoted before by G'ahkara himselt. — That the ‘apara’ quotes 
the Bnhadara?«yaka not according to the Ka#va text — to quote from which is 
G'ahkara’s habit — but from the Mddhyandina text, is due just to the circum- 
stance of his being an ‘ apara,’ i. e. not Gaiikara. 



XXXVl 


VEDANTA-stjTRAS. 


lower but the higher Brahman. — According to Ramanii^a 
the two alternatives are Brahman and Brahma (^ivasa- 
mashi^iriapos/ir/adhipatu >?’atLirmukha//). — Adhik. V and VI 
(comprising, according to 5 ’aiikara, Sutras 14-21) ^ discuss 
the question whether the small ether within the lotus of the 
heart mentioned in Kh. Up. VIII, 1 is the elemental ether 
or the individual soul or Brahman ; the last alternative 
being finally adopted. In favour of the second alternative 
the puiwapakshin pleads the two passages Kh. Up. VIII, 
3, 4 and VIII, 12, 3, about the serene being (samprasada) ; 
for by the latter the individual soul only can be understood, 
and in the chapter, of which the latter passage forms part, 
there are ascribed to it the same qualities (viz. freeness 
from sin, old age, death, &c.) that were predicated in VIII, 
I, of the small ether within the heart. — But the reply to 
this is, that the second passage refers not to the (ordinary) 
individual soul but to the soul in that state where its true 
nature has become manifest, i. e. in which it is Brahman ; so 
that the subject of the passage is in reality not the so-called 
individual soul but Brahman. And in the former of the 
two passages the soul is mentioned not on its own account, 
but merely for the purpose of intimating that the highest 
Self is the cause through which the individual soul manifests 
itself in its true nature. — What Ramanuja understands by 
the avirbhava of the soul will appear from the remarks on 
IV, 4- 

The two next Sutras (22, 23) constitute, according to 
S'afikara, a new adhikara«a (VII), proving that he ' after 
whom everything shines, by whose light all this is lighted ’ 
(KaVa Up. II, 5, 15 j is noisome material luminous body, but 
Brahman Itself. — According to Ramanuja the two Sutras 
do not start a new topic, but merely furnish some further 
arguments strengthening the conclusion arrived at in the 
preceding Sutras.^ 


1 Sutras 14-21 are divided into two adiiikaiawas by tbe Adhikarawaratnamala, 
but leally constitute a simple adhikarawa only. 

® Itar /^aitad evam. Anukntes tasya ( 5 a. Tasya dahardka^asya parabrahma«o 
snukdrad ayam apahatapapmatvddiguwako vimuktabandha/i piatyagdtma na 
dahaiakdja/; tadaiiukdias tatsamyaw tatha hi prat) agdtraano s pi vimuktasya 




INTRODUCTION. 


XXXVll 


Adhik. VIII (34, 25) decides that the person of the size 
of a thumb mentioned in KaMa Up. II, 4, 1 3 is not the 
individual soul but Brahman. 

The two next adhikara/^as are of the nature of a digres- 
sion. The passage about the ahgushMamatra was explained 
on the ground that the human heart is of the size of a 
span ; the question may then be asked whether also such 
individuals as belong to other classes than mankind, more 
particularly the Gods, are capable of the knowledge of 
Brahman : a question finally answered in the affirmative. — 
This discussion leads in its turn to several other digressions, 
among which the most important one refers to the problem 
in what relation the different species of beings stand to the 
words denoting them (Shtra 38). In connexion herewith 
6'ankara treats of the nature of words (i'abda), opposing the 
opinion of the Mimawzsaka Upavarsha, according to whom 
the word is nothing but the aggregate of its constitutive 
letters, to the view of the grammarians who teach that over 
and above the aggregate of the letters there exists a super- 
sensuous entity called ‘ spho/a,’ which is the direct cause of 
the apprehension of the sense of a word (Adhik. IX; Sfitras 
36-33). 

Adhik. X (34-38} explains that Ahdras are altogether 
disqualified for Brahmavidyd. 

Sutra 39 constitutes, according to Aahkara, a new adhi- 
kara^za (XI), proving that the pra^^a in which everything 
trembles, according to Ka.thB. Up. II, 6, 3, is Brahman. — 
According to Ramdnu^a the Sutra does not introduce a new 
topic but merely furnishes an additional reason for the 


parabrahmSnukSra/^ Jiuyate yada pajya/i pajyate rukmavar?zaw kartaram iraw 
purnshaOT brahniayoniw tad^ vidvan pu«yapS,pe vidhUya mranguna/i paramaw 
s^myam upaitity atosmakarta pra^^pativ3.kyanirdishi?a^ aniikS,ryaOT para;;/ 
brahma na daharS.khja//. Api /ca. smaryate. Sa;;/sari7/ospi muktavasthS.ya;;/ 
paramasS,my^pattilaksha7/a// parabrahm&nuk^ra// smaryate ida;// ^«anam 
up&rritya, &c. — Ke/?:id anuk;'/tes tasya smaryate iti kz. sutradvayam adhi- 
kara«^ntai a;;; tarn eva bhS,ntam anubliati saiva;;/ tasya bhhsS. sarvam ida;;/ 
vibhS,ltty s&yzh rrute// parabrahmaparatvanir;/ayS.ya pravr/tta;;/ vadanti. l^at 
tv admyatv&dign;/ako dharmokte/i dyubhv§.dyayatana;;/ svajabdS,d ity adhi 
kara;/advayena tasya prakara;zasya brahmavishayatvapratiphdan6,t ^yotU/l’a- 
ra7zfibhidh&nS.t ity ^dishu paiasya brahma;zo bhS.rupatvS.vagatejz Z'a purvapakshh- 
nutth&nS.d aynkta;« sfttrS.ksharavairupyS,/5 




XXXVlll 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


decision arrived at under Sutras <2,^, 35 ) viz. that the ahgush- 
^.^amdtra is Brahman. On this supposition, Sutras 34-39 
one adhikara;?a in which 36-38 constitute a mere digression 
led up to by the mention made of the heart in 35. — The 
ahgush/Aamatra is referred to twice in the Ka/Aa Upanishad, 
once in the passage discussed (II, 4, is), and once in II, 6, 17 
(‘the Person not larger than a thumb’). 'To determine 
what is meant by the ahgush^'/^amatra, Ramanuja says, we 
are enabled by the passage 11,6, 3, 3, which is intermediate 
between the two passages concerning the ahgush///amatra, 
and which clearly refers to the highest Brahman, of which 
alone everything can be said to stand in awe. 

The next Sutra (40) gives rise to a similar difference of 
opinion. According to Sankara it constitutes by itself a 
new adhikarawa (XII), proving that the ‘light’ (^yotis) 
mentioned in Kh. Up. VIII, 13, 3 is the highest Brahman. 
— According to Rdmanu^a the Sutra continues the pre- 
ceding adhikaraj^^a, and strengthens the conclusion arrived 
at by a further argument, referring to KaifAa Up. II, 5, 15 
— a passage intermediate between the two passages about 
the angushif/zamitra — which speaks of a primary light that 
cannot mean anything but Brahman. The Shtra has in 
that case to be translated as follows : ‘ (The ahgushif/za- 
matra is Brahman) because (in a passage intervening be- 
tween the two) a light is seen to be mentioned (which can 
be Brahman only).’ 

The three last Sutras of the pada are, according to 
Sankara, to be divided into two adhikara;^as (XIII and XIV), 
Sutra 41 deciding that the ether which reveals names and 
forms {Kh. Up. VIII, 14) is not the elemental ether but 
Brahman ; and 43, 43 teaching that the vi^^anamaya, ‘ he 
who consists of knowledge,’ of Bn. Up. IV, 3, 7 is not the 
individual soul but Brahman. — According to Ramanuja 
the three Sutras make up one single adhikara 72 a discussing 
whether the .^/landogya Upanishad passage about the 
ether refers to Brahman or to the individual soul in the 
state of release ; the latter of these two alternatives being 
suggested by the circumstance that the released soul is the 
subject of the passage immediately preceding (‘ Shaking off 




INTRODUCTION. 


XXXIX 


all evil as a horse shakes off his hair/ &c.). Sutra 41 
decides that ‘the ether (is Brahman) because the passage 
designates the nature of something else/ &c. (i. e. of some- 
thing other than the individual soul ; other because to the 
soul the revealing of names and forms cannot be ascribed, 
&c.) — But, an objection is raised, does not more than one 
scriptural passage show that the released soul and Brahman 
are identical, and is not therefore the ether which reveals 
names and forms the soul as well as Brahman ? — (The two, 
Sutra 4Z replies, are different) ‘ because in the states of 
deep sleep and departing (the highest Self) is designated as 
different’ (from the soul) — which point is proved by the 
same scriptural passages which S'ahkara adduces and 
‘ because such terms as Lord and the like ’ cannot be 
applied to the individual soul (43). Reference is made to 
IV, 4, 14, where all ^agadvydpara is said to belong to the 
Lord only, not to the soul even when in the state of 
release. 


Pada IV. 

The last pada of the first adhyaya is specially directed 
against the Sahkhyas. 

The first adhikara^^a (1-7) discusses the passage Ka/Z^a 
Up. I, 3, 10 ; IT, where mention is made of the Great and 
the Undeveloped — both of them terms used with a special 
technical sense in the Sahkhya-j-dstra, avyakta being a 
synonym for pradhana. — Sankara shows by an exhaustive 
review of the topics of the KaV^a Upanishad that the term 
avyakta has not the special meaning which the Sahkhyas 
attribute to it, but denotes the body, more strictly the 
subtle body (sukshma i'artra), but at the same time the 
gross body also, in so far as it is viewed as an effect of the 
subtle one. 

Adhik. II (8-10) demonstrates, according to S'ahkara, that 
the tricoloured a^a spoken of in Sve. Up. IV, 5 is not the 
pradhdna of the Sahkhyas, but either that power of the 
Lord from which the world springs, or else the primary 
causal matter first produced by that power, — What Ramh- 



xl ved^nta-sOtras. 


rni^ in contradistinction from 5ankara understands by the 
primary causal matter, follows from the short sketch given 
above of the two systems. 

Adhik. Ill (11-13) shows that the pa«>^a pa^y^a^ana/^ 
mentioned in Bn. Up. IV, 4, 17 are not the twenty-five 
principles of the Sankhyas. — Adhik. IV (14, 15) proves that 
Scripture does not contradict itself on the all-important 
point of Brahman, i.e. a being whose essence is intelligence, 
being the cause of the world. 

Adhik. V (16-18) is, according to .Sankara, meant to 
prove that ‘ he who is the maker of those persons, of whom 
this is the work,’ mentioned in Kau. Up. IV, 19, is not 
either the vital air or the individual soul, but Brahman. — 
The subject of the adhikara;^a is essentially the same in 
Ramanu^’s view ; greater stress is, however, laid on the 
adhikara/^a being polemical against the SMkhyas, who 
wish to turn the passage into an argument for the pradhana 
doctrine. 

The same partial difference of view is observable with 
regard to the next adhikara;?a (VI ; Sutras j g- 2 ,z) which 
decides that the ‘ Self to be seen, to be heard,’ &c. (Bn. Up. 
II, 4, 5) is the highest Self, not the individual soul. This 
latter passage also is, according to Ram^nu^a, made the 
subject of discussion in order to rebut the Sankhya who is 
anxious to prove that what is there inculcated as the object 
of knowledge is not a universal Self but merely the Sankhya 
purusha. 

Adhik, VII (23-2^7) teaches that Brahman is not only 
the efficient or operative cause (nimitta) of the world, but 
its material cause as well. The world springs from Brahman 
by way of modification (pariwama ; Sutra 25).— RAminuj^a 
views this adhikara/^a as specially directed against the 
Servara-s^nkhyas who indeed admit the existence of a 
highest Lord, but postulate in addition an independent 
pradhana on which the Lord acts as an operative cause 
merely. 

Adhik, VIII (28) remarks that the refutation of the 
Sankhya views is applicable to other theories also, such as 
the doctrine of the world having originated from atoms. 



INTRODUCTION. 


xli 


After this rapid survey of the contents of the first adhyaya 
and the succinct indication of the most important points in 
which the views of Sankara and Ramanuja diverge, we 
turn to a short consideration of two questions which here 
naturally present themselves, viz., firstly, which is the prin- 
ciple on which the Vedic passages referred to in the Sutras 
have been selected and arranged ; and, secondly, if, where 
S'ahkara and Rdm^nu^a disagree as to the subdivision of 
the Sutras into Adhikara^^as, and the determination of the 
Vedic passages discussed in the Sutras, there are to be met 
with any indications enabling us to determine which of the 
two commentators is right. (The more general question as 
to how far the Sutras favour either 6’ahkara’s or Rama- 
nuja’s general views cannot be considered at present.) 

The Hindu' commentators here and there attempt to 
point out the reason why the discussion of a certain Vedic 
passage is immediately followed by the consideration of a 
certain other one. Their explanations — which have occa- 
sionally been referred to in the notes to the translation — 
rest on the assumption that the Sutrakdra in arranging the 
texts to be commented upon was guided by technicalities 
of the Mimi7;^sa-systcm, especially by a regard for the 
various so-called means of proof which the Mimd?;^saka 
employs for the purpose of determining the proper meaning 
and position of scriptural passages. But that this was the 
guiding principle, is rendered altogether improbable by a 
simple tabular statement of the Vedic passages referred to 
in the first adhyhya, such as given by Deussen on page 1 30 ; 
for from the latter it appears that the order in which the 
Sutras exhibit the scriptural passages follows the order in 
which those passages themselves occur in the Upanishads, 
and it would certainly be a most strange coincidence if that 
order enabled us at the same time to exemplify the various 
pramh;2as of the Mimawzsa in their due systematic suc- 
cession. 

As Deussen’s statement shows, most of the passages dis- 
cussed are taken from the jV>^andogya Upanishad, so many 
indeed that the whole first adhyaya may be said to consist 
of a discussion of all those jVMndogya passages of which it 




vedAnta-s^tras. 


xlii 


is doubtful whether they are concerned with Brahman or 
not, passages from the other Upanishads being brought in 
wherever an opportunity offers. Considering the prominent 
position assigned to the Upanishad mentioned, I think it 
likely that the SMrakira meant to begin the series of 
doubtful texts with the first doubtful passage from the 
KhkndogySi, and that hence the sixth adhikara;?a which 
treats of the anandamaya mentioned in the Taittiriya 
Upanishad has, in agreement with R^m^nu^a’s views, to be 
separated from the subsequent adhikara^as, and to be com- 
bined with the preceding ones whose task it is to lay down 
the fundamental propositions regarding Brahman’s nature. 
— The remaining adhikara?2as of the first pAda follow the 
order of passages in the Khkndogyz. Upanishad, and there- 
fore call for no remark ; with the exception of the last 
adhikara/^a, which refers to a Kaushitaki passage, for whose 
being introduced in this place I am not able to account. — 
The first adhikara??a of the second pdda returns to the 
/CMndogya Upanishad. The second one treats of a passage 
in the Kaz'.^a Upanishad where a being is referred to which 
eats everything. The reason why that passage is introduced in 
this place seems to be correctly assigned in the .Sri-bh^shya, 
which remarks that, as in the preceding Sutra it had been 
argued that the highest Self is not an enjoyer, a doubt 
arises whether by that being w'hich eats everything the 
highest Self can be meant — The third adhikarai^a again, 
whose topic is the ‘two entered into the cave’ (Ksitka. Up. 
I, 3, i), appears, as RAminu^a remarks, to come in at this 
place owing to the preceding adhikara^^a ; for if it could 
not be proved that one of the two is the highest Self, a 
doubt would attach to the explanation given above of the 
‘ eater,’ since the ‘ two entered into the cave,’ and the ‘ eater ’ 
stand under the same prakara??a, and must therefore be 
held to refer to the same matter. — The fourth adhikara;2a 
is again occupied with a KhkndQgyd, passage. — The fifth 
adhikara;^a, whose topic is the Ruler within (antaryimin), 
manifestly owes its place, as remarked by RAm^nu^a also, 

^ Yadi paramitma na bhoktS. eva?« tarlii bhoktntaya ptatlyam^no ^tva eva 
syfld ity &sankyS.ha att&. 


INTRODUCTION. 


xliii 


to the fact that the Vedic passage treated had been employed 
in the preceding adhikara;2a (I, a, 14) for the purpose of 
strengthening the argument — The sixth adhikara;?aj again, 
which discusses ‘ that which is not seen ’ (adre^ya ; M-Vind. Up. 
1, 1, 6), is clearly introduced in this place because in the pre- 
ceding adhikara;2a it had been said that adnsh^a, &c. denote 
the highest Self. — The reasons to which the last adhikara;?a 
of the second pada and the first and third adhikara;?^as of the 
third pada owe their places' are not apparent (the second 
adhikara^za of the third pada treats of a /iT/^dndogya passage). 
The introduction, on the other hand, of the passage from the 
Prajna Upanishad treating of theakshara 0?/2kdra is clearly 
due to the circumstance that an akshara, of a different nature, 
had been discussed in the preceding adhikarawa. — The fifth 
and sixth adhikaraj'^as investigate KMndogya. passages. — 
The two next Sutras (2,2, 33) are, as remarked above, con- 
sidered by vSahkara to constitute a new adhikara 72 a treating 
of the ‘ being after which everything shines ’ (Mund, Up. II, 2, 
10) ; while Rdminu^a looks on them as continuing the sixth 
adhikara;2a. There is one circumstance which renders it at 
any rate probable that Rdmdnu^a, and not S’ankara, here 
hits the intention of the author of the Shtras. The general 
rule in the first three pddas is that, wherever a new Vedic 
passage is meant to be introduced, the subject of the dis- 
cussion, i. e. that being which in the end is declared to be 
Brahman is referred to by means of a special word, in most 
cases a nominative form From this rule there is in the 
preceding part of the adhydya only one real exception, viz. 
in I, 2, I, which possibly may be due to the fact that there 
a new pdda begins, and it therefore was considered super- 


^ SthInIdivyapadejI/l’ ity atra ya/; /i’aksliiishi tish^/iann ity S.dinS. prati- 
p&dyamanaOT /Sakslmslii sthitiniyamanadika;/^ paramitmana eveti siddhara 
krz'tvS, akskipurnshasya paramatmatva?^ sadhitam idiniwi tad eva samarthayate 
antaryl®. 

2 Anandamaya/j I, i, 12; anta^ I, i, 20; I, i, 22; prS,na/i I, i, 23; 

^yoti/^ I, I, 24; prana/i I, i, 28; alt^ I, 2, 9; guMw pravish/ati I, 2, li; 
antara I, 2, 13 ; antarylmJ I, 2, iS ; adwyatv 9 .digu«aka/^ I, 2, 21 ; vai^v&nara ,4 
I, 2, 24; dyubkvftdy&yatanam I, 3, i ; bhdma I, 3, 8 ; aksbai'am I, 3, 10 ; sa /5 
3 j ^ 3 ; dahara/? I, 3, 14; pramita/i I, 3, 24; {gyoiih I, 3, 40;) ak&ja/^ I, 
3 , 41 - 




xliv 


VEdAnTA'S^TRAS. 


fiuous to indicate the introduction of a new topic by a 
special word. The exception supplied by I, 3, 19 is only 
an apparent one ; for, as remarked above, Sutra 1 9 does not 
in reality begin a new adhikaraz/a. A few exceptions 
occurring later on will be noticed in their places. — Now 
neither Sutra 33 nor Sutra 33 contains any word intimating 
that a new Vedic passage is being taken into consideration, 
and hence it appears preferable to look upon them, with 
Ramanuja, as continuing the topic of the preceding adhika- 
razza. — This conclusion receives an additional confirmation 
from the position of the next adhikarazza, which treats of 
the being ‘a span long ’ mentioned in Kaz^/za Up. II, 4 , 12 ; 
for the reason of this latter passage being considered here is 
almost certainly the reference to the alpaj'ruti in Sutra 3T, 
and, if so, the angushz'/zamatra properly constitutes the sub- 
ject of the adhikarazza immediately following on Adhik. V, 
VI ; which, in its turn, implies that Sutras 23, 33 do not form 
an independent adhikarazza. — The two next adhikarazzas are 
digressions, and do not refer to special Vedic passages — 
Sfitra 39 forms a new adhikarazza, according to S’ankara, but 
not according to RdmAnu^a, whose opinion seems again to be 
countenanced by the fact that the Sutra does not exhibit 
any word indicative of a new topic. The same difference of 
opinion prevails with regard to Sutra 40, and it appears from 
the translation of the Sutra given above, according to 
RamAnu^’s view, that ‘^yoti/^ ’ need not be taken as a nomi- 
native. — The last two adhikarazzas finally refer, according to 
Rdmanu^a, to one iT/zandogya passage only, and here also 
we have to notice that Sutra 42 does not comprise any word 
intimating that a new passage is about to be discussed. 

From all this we seem entitled to draw the following 
conclusions. The Vedic passages discussed in the three 
first pAdas of the Vedanta-siitras comprise all the doubtful 
— or at any rate all the more important doubtful — passages 
from the /F/landogya Upanishad. These passages are 
arranged in the order in which the text of the Upanishad 
exhibits them. Passages from other Upanishads are dis- 
cussed as opportunities offer, there being always a special 
reason why a certain /F/^Andogya passage is followed by 



INTRODUCTION. 


xlv 


a certain passage from some other Upanishad. Those 
reasons can be assigned with sufficient certainty in a num- 
ber of cases although not in all, and from among those 
passages whose introduction cannot be satisfactorily ac- 
counted for some are eliminated by our following the 
subdivision of the Sutras into adhikara/^as adopted by 
Rdmanu^a, a subdivision countenanced by the external 
form of the Sutras. 

The fourth pada of the first adhyaya has to be taken 
by itself. It is directed specially and avowedly against 
Sihkhya-interpretations of Scripture, not only in its earlier 
part which discusses isolated passages, but also — as is 
brought out much more clearly in the .Sri-bhashya than by 
S'aiikara — in its latter part which takes a general survey 
of the entire scriptural evidence for Brahman being the 
material as well as the operative cause of the world. 

Deussen (p. aai) thinks that the selection made by the 
Shtrakira of Vedic passages setting forth the nature of 
Brahman is not in all cases an altogether happy one. 
But this reproach rests on the assumption that the pas- 
sages referred to in the first adhyaya were chosen for the 
purpose of throwing light on what Brahman is, and this 
assumption can hardly be upheld. The Vedanta-sutras 
as well as the Purva Mima^^sa-sutras are throughout Mi- 
mams^, i. e. critical discussions of such scriptural passages as 
on a prim,^ facie view admit of different interpretations 
and therefore necessitate a careful enquiry into their mean- 
ing.* Here and there we meet with Sutras which do not 
directly involve a discussion of the sense of some particular 
Vedic passage, but rather make a mere statement on some 
important point. But those cases are rare, and it would 
be altogether contrary to the general spirit of the Sutras to 
assume that a whole adhyaya should be devoted to the 
task of showing what Brahman is. The latter point is suf- 
ficiently determined in the first five (or six) adhikara;^as ; 
but after we once know what Brahman is we are at once 
confronted by a number of Upanishad passages concerning 
which it is doubtful whether they refer to Brahman or not. 
With their discussion all the remaining adhikara/^ias of the 



xlvi 


vedanta-sOtras. 


first adhyaya are occupied. That the Vedanta-sutras 
view it as a particularly important task to controvert the 
doctrine of the S§,nkhyas is patent (and has also been fully 
pointed out by Deussen, p. 33)- The fifth adhikaraj^a 
already declares itself against the doctrine that the world 
has sprung from a non-intelligent principle, the pradhdna, 
and the fourth pada of the first adhyaya returns to an 
express polemic against Sankhya interpretations of cer- 
tain Vedic statements. It is therefore perhaps not saying 
too much if we maintain that the entire fii-st adhyaya is 
due to the wish, on the part of the Sutrakaraj to guard his 
own doctrine against Sankhya attacks. Whatever the 
attitude of the other so-called orthodox systems may be 
towards the Veda, the Sankhya system is the only one 
whose adherents were anxious — and actually attempted — 
to prove that their views are warranted by scriptural pas- 
sages, The Sankhya tendency thus would be to show 
that all those Vedic texts which the Vedantin claims as 
teaching the existence of Brahman, the intelligent and sole 
cause of the world, refer either to the pradhana or some 
product of the pradhana, or else to the purusha in the 
Sankhya sense, i. e. the individual soul. It consequently 
became the task of the Vedantin to guard the Upanishads 
against misinterpretations of the kind, and this he did in 
the first adhyaya of the Veddnta-siitras, selecting those 
passages about whose interpretation doubts were, for some 
reason or other, likely to arise. Some of the passages 
singled out are certainly obscure, and hence liable to 
various interpretations ; of others it is less apparent why 
it was thought requisite to discuss them at length. But 
this is hardly a matter in which we are entitled to find 
fault with the Sfitrakara ; for no modern scholar, either 
European or Hindu, is — or can possibly be — sufficiently at 
home, on the one hand, in the religious and philosophical 
views which prevailed at the time when the Sutras may 
have been composed, and, on the other hand, in the in- 
tricacies of the Mima;;2sa, to judge with confidence which 
Vedic passages may give rise to discussions and which not. 



INTRODUCTION. 


xlvii 


SECOND ADHYAYA. 

The first adhyaya has proved that all the Vedanta-texts 
unanimously teach that there is only one cause of the 
world, viz. Brahman, whose nature is intelligence, and that 
there exists no scriptural passage which can be used to 
establish systems opposed to the Vedanta, more especially 
the Saiikhya system. The task of the two first padas of 
the second adhydya is to rebut any objections which may 
be raised against the Vedanta doctrine on purely specula- 
tive grounds, apart from scriptural authority, and to show, 
again on purely speculative grounds, that none of the sys- 
tems irreconcilable with the Vedanta can be satisfactorily 
established. 

Pada I. 

Adhikara;2a I refutes the Sdnkhya objection that the 
acceptation of the Veddnta system involves the rejection 
of the SMkhya doctrine which after all constitutes a part 
of Smnti, and as such has claims on consideration. — To 
accept the Sahkhya-smn'ti, the Veddntin replies, would 
compel us to reject other Smrftis, such as the Manu-smnti, 
which are opposed to the Sahkhya doctrine. The con- 
flicting claims of Smrftis can be settled only on the ground 
of the Veda, and there can be no doubt that the Veda does 
not confirm the Sihkhya-smr2ti, but rather those Smrztis 
which teach the origination of the world from an intelligent 
primary cause. 

Adhik. II (3) extends the same line of argumentation to 
the Yoga-smrfti. 

Adhik. Ill (4-1 1) shows that Brahman, although of the 
nature of intelligence, yet may be the cause of the non- 
intelligent material world, and that it is not contaminated 
by the qualities of the world when the latter is refunded 
into Brahman. For ordinary experience teaches us that 
like does not always spring from like, and that the qualities 
of effected things when the latter are refunded into their 
causes— as when golden ornaments, for instance, are melted 



xlviii 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


and thereby become simple gold again — do not continue to 
exist in those causes. — Here also the argumentation is 
specially directed against the Sahkhyas, who, in order to 
account for the materiality and the various imperfections 
of the world, think it necessary to assume a causal sub- 
stance participating in the same characteristics. 

Adhik. IV (la) points out that the line of reasoning fol- 
lowed in the preceding adhikara^^a is valid also against 
other theories, such as the atomistic doctrine. 

The one Sutra (13) constituting Adhik. V teaches, accord- 
ing to S'ahkara, that although the enjoying souls as well as 
the objects of fruition are in reality nothing but Brahman, 
and on that account identical, yet the two sets may prac- 
tically be held apart, just as in ordinary life we hold apart, 
and distinguish as separate individual things, the waves, 
ripples, and foam of the sea, although at the bottom waves, 
ripples, and foam are all of them identical as being neither 
more nor less than sea- water. — The 5 rt-bhAshya gives a 
totally different interpretation of the Sutra, according to 
which the latter has nothing whatever to do with the 
eventual non-distinction of enjoying souls and objects to 
be enjoyed. Translated according to Raminu^a’s view, 
the Shtra runs as follows ; ‘ If non-distinction (of the Lord 
and the individual souls) is said to result from the circum- 
stance of (the Lord himself) becoming an enjoyer (a soul), 
we refute this objection by instances from every-day ex- 
perience.’ That is to say: If it be maintained that from 
our doctrine previously expounded, according to which this 
world springs from the Lord and constitutes his body, it 
follows that the Lord, as an embodied being, is not essen- 
tially different from other souls, and subject to fruition as 
they are ; we reply that the Lord’s having a body does 
not involve his being subject to fruition, not any more than 
in ordinary life a king, although himself an embodied 
being, is affected by the experiences of pleasure and pain 
which his servants have to undergo. — The construction 
which Ramdnu^a puts on the Sutra is not repugnant either 
to the words of the Sutra or to the context in which the 
latter stands, and that it rests on earlier authority appears 


INTRODUCTION. 


xlix 


from a quotation made by Rdm^nu^a from the Drami- 
rf'abhashyakara 

Adhik. VI (i4-:^o) ' treats of the non-diflference of the 
effect from the cause; a Vedanta doctrine which is de- 
fended by its adherents against the Vaijeshikas according 
to whom the effect is something different from the cause. 
— The divergent views of .Sahkara and Ramanuja on this 
important point have been sufficiently illustrated in the 
general sketch of the two systems. 

Adhik. VII (21-33) refutes the objection that, from the 
Vedic passages insisting on the identity of the Lord and 
the individual soul, it follows that the Lord must be like 
the individual soul the cause of evil, and that hence the 
entire doctrine of an all-powerful and all-wise Lord being 
the cause of the world has to be rejected. For, the Sutra- 
kara remarks, the creative principle of the world is addi- 
tional to, i. e. other than, the individual soul, the difference 
of the two being distinctly declared by Scripture. — The 
way in which the three Sutras constituting this adhikara^^a 
are treated by Sankara on the one hand and Rdmanu^a on 
the other is characteristic. Ramanu^'a throughout simply 
follows the words of the Sutras, of which Sutra 2i formu- 
lates the objection based on such texts as ‘Thou art 
that,’ while Sutra 32 replies that Brahman is different 
from the soul, since that is expressly declared by Scrip- 
ture. S'ahkara, on the other hand, sees himself obliged to 
add that the difference of the two, plainly maintained in 
Sutra 33 , is not real, but due to the soul’s fictitious limiting 
adjuncts. 

Adhik. VIII (34, 35) shows that Brahman, although des- 
titute of material and instruments of action, may yet pro- 
duce the world, just as gods by their mere power create 


Lokavat. YathS. loke r%'ajS,bautaavartina;« ia rS,^inugrahanigiahak;>Vta- 
siikliadukhayogespi na sajariratvaml,lre;za i'S.sake r&^any api J^sani.nuv?'2ttya- 
tivr2ttininiittasukhacIukhayor bhokt«‘tvaprasanga/i. YatMha Diami&bM- 
shyak&ra^ jsXht loke pra/Suradandaruke gliorexnarthasa?«ka/ea:pi 

pradeje vaitam^noipi vya^anldyavadbutadeho doshair na sprwyate abhipre- 
thns kz. lok§;n paripipS,layishati bhog&wj /la gandhadin aviJva^anop)abliogyin 
dhirayati tath&sau lokejvaro bhramalsvas&maithya.l§;maro dosbair na spmyate 
raksbati X’a lok^n brabmalokbdt?;z 5 /lavijva^anopabbogy&,n dhS,rayatiti. 

r^/ll d 




1 


VEDANTA'SOtRAS. 


palaces, animals, and the like, and as milk by itself turns 
into curds. 

Adhik. IX ( 2 , 6 -%^) explains that, according to the express 
doctrine of Scripture, Brahman does not in its entirety pass 
over into the world, and, although emitting the world from 
itself, yet remains one' and undivided. This is possible, ac- 
cording to S'ahkara, because the world is unreal ; according 
to Rimanu^a, because the creation is merely the visible and 
tangible manifestation of what previously existed in Brah- 
man in a subtle imperceptible condition. 

Adhik. X (30, 31) teaches that Brahman, although des- 
titute of instruments of action, is enabled to create the 
world by means of the manifold powers which it possesses. 

Adhik. XI (32, 33) assigns the motive of the creation, or, 
more properly expressed, teaches that Brahman, in creating 
the world, has no motive in the strict sense of the word, but 
follows a mere sportive impulse. 

Adhik. XII (34-36) justifies Brahman from the charges 
of partiality and cruelty which might be brought against 
it owing to the inequality of position and fate of the various 
animate beings, and the universal suffering of the world. 
Brahman, as a creator and dispenser, acts with a view to the 
merit and demerit of the individual souls, and has so acted 
from all eternity. 

Adhik. XIII (37) sums up the preceding argumentation 
by declaring that all the qualities of Brahman — 'Omniscience 
and so on — are such as to capacitate it for the creation of 
the world. 

PAda II. 

The task of the second pada is to refute, by arguments 
independent of Vedic passages, the more important philo- 
sophical theories concerning the origin of the world which 
are opposed to the Veddnta view.— The first adhikara;2a 
(i-io) is directed against the Sankhyas, whose doctrine had 
already been touched upon incidentally in several previous 
places, and aims at proving that a non-intelligent first cause, 
such as the pradhana of the SMkhyas, is unable to create 
and dispose.~The second adhikarawa (11-17) rcfutes the 



INTRODUCTION. 


li 


Vai^eshika tenet that the world originates from atoms set 
in motion by the adrfsh^a. — The third and fourth adhika- 
ra;^as are directed against various schools of Bauddha phi- 
losophers. Adhik. Ill (18-37) hnpugns the view of the 
so-called sarvastitvavadins, or bdhydrthavadins, who main- 
tain the reality of an external as well as an internal world ; 
Adhik. IV (38-33) is directed against the vi^;?anavadinsj 
according to whom ideas are the only reality. — The last 
Sutra of this adhikara?2a is treated by R^manu^a as a 
separate adhikara7^a refuting the view of the Madhyamikas, 
who teach that everything is void, i.e. that nothing what- 
ever is real. — Adhik. V (33-36) is directed against the doc- 
trine of the f^ainas ; Adhik. VI (37-41) against those philo- 
sophical schools which teach that a highest Lord is not the 
material but only the operative cause of the world. 

The last adhikara^/a of the pada (43-45) refers, according 
to the unanimous statement of the commentators, to the 
doctrine of the Bhagavatas or PaWi^aratras. But Saiikara 
and R^manuj^a totally disagree as to the drift of the 
Sutrakara’s opinion regarding that system. According to 
the former it is condemned like the systems previously 
referred to; according to the latter it is approved of. — 
Sutras 43 and 43, according to both commentators, raise 
objections against the system ; Shtra 43 being directed 
against the doctrine that from the highest being, called 
Vasudeva, there is originated Sahkarsha^^a, i. e. the ^iva, 
on the ground that thereby those scriptural passages would 
be contradicted which teach the soul's eternity ; and Sutra 
43 impugning the doctrine that from Sahkarsha^a there 
springs Pradyumna, i.e. the manas. — The Sutra on which 
the difference of interpretation turns is 44. Literally trans- 
lated it runs, ‘ Or, on account of there being ’ (or, ‘ their 
being’) ‘knowledge and so on, there is non-contradiction 
of that.’' — ^This means, according to ^Sankara, ‘Or, if in 
consequence of the existence of knowledge and so on (on 
the part of Sahkarsha77a, &c. they be taken not as soul, 
mind, &c. but as Lords of pre-eminent knowledge, &c.), 
yet there is non-contradiction of that (viz. of the objection 
raised in Shtra 43 against the Bh^gavata doctrine).’ — 

d 2 



lii 


VEDANTA-SlJTRAS. 


According to Rdmdnu^a, on the other hand, the Sutra 
has to be explained as follows : ‘ Or, rather there is non- 
contradiction of that (i. e. the Pa; 1 ,^aratra doctrine) on ac- 
count of their being knowledge and so on (i. e. on account 
of their being Brahman).’ Which means: Since Sah- 
karshaz/a and so on are merely forms of manifestation 
of Brahman, the Piwy^aratra doctrine, according to which 
they spring from Brahman, is not contradicted. — The form 
of the Sutra makes it difficult for us to decide which of the 
two interpretations is the right one ; it, however, appears 
to me that the explanations of the ‘vi’ and of the ^tat,’ 
implied in Ram^nu^a’s comment, are more natural than 
those resulting from S'ahkara’s interpretation. Nor would 
it be an unnatural proceeding to close the polemical pada 
with a defence of that doctrine which — in spite of objec- 
tions — has to be viewed as the true one. 

Pada III. 

The third pMa discusses the question whether the dif- 
ferent forms of existence which, in their totality, constitute 
the world have an origin or not, i. e. whether they are co- 
eternal with Brahman, or issue from it and are refunded 
into it at stated intervals. 

The first seven adhikaraz^as treat of the five elementary 
substances. — Adhik. I (1-7) teaches that the ether is not 
co-eternal with Brahman, but springs from it as its first 
effect. — Adhik. II (8) shows that air springs from ether ; 
Adhik. IV, V, VI (10; ii; i;^) that fire springs from air, 
water from fire, earth from water. — Adhik. Ill (9) explains 
by way of digression that Brahman, which is not some 
special entity, but quite generally ‘that which is,’ cannot 
have originated from anything else. 

Adhik. VII (13) demonstrates that the origination of one 
element from another is due, not to the latter in itself, but to 
Brahman acting in it. 

Adhik. VIII (14) teaches that the reabsorption of the 
elements into Brahman takes place in the inverse order of 
their emission. 

Adhik. IX (15) remarks that the indicated order in which 



INTRODUCTION. 


Hii 


the emission and the reabsorption of the elementary sub- 
stances take place is not interfered with by the creation 
and reabsorption of the organs of the soul, i.e. the sense 
organs and the internal organ (manas) ; for they also are 
of elemental nature, and as such created and retracted to- 
gether with the elements of which they consist. 

The remainder of the pada is taken up by a discussion of 
the nature of the individual soul, the ^iva. — Adhik. X (i6) 
teaches that expressions such as ‘ Devadatta is born/ ‘Dc- 
vadatta has died/ strictly apply to the body only, and arc 
transferred to the soul in so far only as it is connected with 
a body. 

Adhik. XI (17) teaches that the individual soul is, accord- 
ing to Scripture, permanent, eternal, and therefore not, like 
the ether and the other elements, produced from Brahman 
at the time of creation. — This Sutra is of course com- 
mented on in a very different manner by Aahkara on the 
one hand and Ramanuja on the other. According to the 
former, the ^iva is in reality identical — and as such co- 
eternal — with Brahman; what originates is merely the 
soul’s connexion with its limiting adjuncts, and that con- 
nexion is moreover illusory. — According to Ramanuja, the 
^iva is indeed an effect of Brahman, but has existed in 
Brahman from all eternity as an individual being and as 
a mode (prakara) of Brahman. So indeed have also the 
material .elements ; yet there is an important distinction 
owing to which the elements may be said to originate at 
the time of creation, while the same cannot be said of the 
soul. Previously to creation the material elements exist 
in a subtle condition in which they possess none of the 
qualities that later on render them the objects of ordinary 
experience ; hence, when passing over into the gross state 
at the time of creation, they may be said to originate. The 
souls, on the other hand, possess at all times the same 
essential qualities, i. e. they are cognizing agents ; only, 
whenever a new creation takes place, they associate 
themselves with bodies, and their intelligence therewith 
undergoes a certain expansion or 'development (vikiua)^ 
contrasting with the unevolved or contracted state (sah- 



liv 


VEDANTA-S^)TRAS. 


ko/^a) which characterised it during the preceding pralaya. 
But this change is not a change of essential nature (svaru- 
pdnyathabhava), and hence we have to distinguish the souls 
as permanent entities from the material elements which at 
the time of each creation and reabsorption change their 
essential characteristics. 

Adhik. XII (.18) defines the nature of the individual soul. 
The Sutra declares that the soul is This means, 

according to Xaiikara, that intelligence or knowledge does 
not, as the Vaij-eshikas teach, constitute a mere attribute of 
the soul which in itself is essentially non-intelligent, but is 
the very essence of the soul. The soul is not a knower, but 
knowledge ; not intelligent, but intelligence. — Ram^nn^a, 
on the other hand, explains by gnk\.ril i.e. knower, 

knowing agent, and considers the Sutra to be directed not 
only against the Vaijeshikas, but also against those philo- 
sophers who — like the Sihkhyas and the Vedantins of 
Xaiikara’s school — maintain that the soul is not a knowing 
agent, but pure >^aitanya. — The wording of the Shtra cer- 
tainly seems to favour R^m^nu^a’s interpretation ; we can 
hardly imagine that an author definitely holding the views 
of .Sankara should, when propounding the important dogma 
of the soul’s nature, use the term gna. of which the most 
obvious interpretation isgnktri, not gnknam. 

Adhik. XIII (19-32) treats the question whether the 
individual soul is a??u, 1 e. of very minute size, or omni- 
present, all-pervading (sarvagata, vydpin). Here, again, we 
meet with diametrically opposite views. — In 6’ankara’s 
opinion the Sutras 1 9-28 represent the purvapaksha view, 
according to which the ^iva is aim, while Sutra 29 formu- 
lates the siddhinta, viz. that the ^iva, which in reality is 
all-pervading, is spoken of as ann in some scriptural passages, 
because the “qualities of the internal organ — which itself is 
a;/u — constitute the essence of the individual soul as long 
as the latter is implicated in the sawzsara. — According to 
R^minu^a, on the other hand, the first Sutra of the adhi- 
kara;za gives utterance to the siddhanta view, according to 
which the soul is of minute size ; the Sfitras 20-25 confirm 
this view and refute objections raised against it ; while the 



INTRODUCTION. 


Iv 


Sutras 2 , 6 - 2 g resume the question already mooted under 
Sutra 1 8, viz. in what relation the soul as knowing agent 
(gn-ktri) stands to knowledge (gnkna). — In order to decide 
between the conflicting claims of these two interpretations 
we must enter into some details. — S'ahkara maintains that 
Sutras 19-28 state and enforce a piirvapaksha view, which is 
finally refuted in 29. What here strikes us at the outset, is 
the unusual length to which the defence of a mere prima 
facie view is carried ; in no other place the Sutras take so 
much trouble to render plausible what is meant to be re- 
jected in the end, and an unbiassed reader will certainly 
feel inclined to think that in 19-28 we have to do, not with 
the preliminary statement of a view finally to be abandoned, 
but with an elaborate bona fide attempt to establish and 
vindicate an essential dogma of the system. Still it is not 
altogether impossible that the purvapaksha should here be 
treated at greater length than usual, and the decisive point is 
therefore whether we can, with S'ahkara, look upon Sutra 29 
as embodying a refutation ot the purvapaksha and thus im- 
plicitly acknowledging the doctrine that the individual soul 
is all-pervading. Now I think there can be no doubt that 
Sankara’s interpretation of the Sutra is exceedingly forced. 
Literally translated (and leaving out the non-essential word 
‘pra^wavat’) the Sutra runs as follows: ‘But on account of 
that quality (or “ those qualities ; ” or else “ on account of the 
quality — or qualities — of that ”) being the essence, (there is) 
that designation (or “ the designation of that ”).’ This San- 
kara maintains to mean, ‘ Because the qualities of the 
buddhi are the essence of the soul in the sawsdra state, 
therefore the soul itself is sometimes spoken of as a;2U.’ 
Now, in the first place, nothing in the context warrants the 
explanation of the first *tat’ by buddhi. And — which is 
more important — in the second place, it is more than 
doubtful whether on Saiikara’s own system the qualities 
of the buddhi — such as pleasure, pain, desire, aversion, 
&c. — can with any propriety be said to constitute the 
essence of the soul even in the sa?;^sdra state. The essence 
of the soul in whatever state, according to 5'ahkara’s sys- 
tem, is knowledge or intelligence ; whatever is due to its 



Ivi 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


association with the buddhi is non-essential or, more 
strictly, unreal, false. 

There are no similar difhculties in the way of Ramdnu^a’s 
interpretation of the adhikara;2a. He agrees with .Sankara 
in the explanation of Sutras 19-35, with this difference that 
he views them as setting forth, not the purvapaksha, but the 
siddhinta. Sutras 26-38 also are interpreted in a manner not 
very different from 6'ahkara’s, special stress being laid on 
the distinction made by Scripture between knowledge as a 
mere quality and the soul as a knowing agent, the sub- 
stratum of knowledge. This discussion naturally gives rise 
to the question how it is that Scripture in some places 
makes use of the term vi^wana when meaning the indi- 
vidual soul. The answer is given in Sutra 39, ‘ The soul is 
designated as knowledge because it has that quality for its 
essence,’ i. e. because knowledge is the essential character- 
istic quality of the soul, therefore the term ‘ knowledge ’ is 
employed here and there to denote the soul itself. This 
latter interpretation gives rise to no doubt whatever. It 
closely follows the wording of the text and does not 
necessitate any forced supplementation. The ‘ tu ’ of the 
Shtra which, according to 6'ahkara, is meant to discard 
the pCirvapaksha, serves on Ramanuja’s view to set aside 
a previously-raised objection ; an altogether legitimate 
assumption. 

Of the three remaining Sutras of the adhikara?m (30-33), 
30 explains, according to .Saiikara, that the soul may be 
called a«u, since, as long as it exists in the sa^/^sara con- 
dition, it is connected with the buddhi. According to 
Ramanuja the Sutra teaches that the soul may be called 
vij?zina because the latter constitutes its essential quality as 
long as it exists. — Sutra 31 intimates, according to S'ahkara, 
that in the states of deep sleep, and so on, the soul is poten- 
tially connected with the buddhi, while in the waking state 
that connexion becomes actually manifest. The same 
Sutra, according to Rimanuja, teaches that jzzdtntva is 
properly said to constitute the soul’s essential nature, 
although it is actually manifested in some states of the soul 
only. — In Sutra 33, finally, 5 ahkara sees a statement of the 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ivii 


doctrine that, unless the soul had the buddhi for its limiting- 
adjunct, it would either be permanently cognizing or perma- 
nently non-cognizing ; while, according to Ramdnu^-a, the 
Sutra means that the soul would either be permanently 
cognizing or permanently non-cognizing, if it were pure 
knowledge and all-pervading (instead of being gnktri and 
a?m, as it is in reality). — The three Sutras can be made 
to fit in with either interpretation, although it must be 
noted that none of them explicitly refers to the soul’s 
connexion with the buddhi. 

Adhik. XIV and XV (33-39 ; 40) refer to the kartrztva of 
the ^iva, i. e, the question whether the soul is an agent. 
Sutras 33-39 clearly say that it is such. But as, according 
to S'ahkara’s system, this cannot be the final view, — the soul 
being essentially non-active, and all action belonging to the 
world of upadhis, — he looks upon the next following Sutra 
(40) as constituting an adhikara^m by itself, and teaching 
that the soul is an agent when connected with the instru- 
ments of action, buddhi, &c., while it ceases to be so when 
dissociated from them, ‘just as the carpenter acts in both 
ways,’ i. e. just as the carpenter works as long as he wields 
his instruments, and rests after having laid them aside. — 
Rdminu^a, perhaps more naturally, does not separate Sutra 
40 from the preceding Sutras, but interprets it as follows : 
Activity is indeed an essential attribute of the soul ; but 
therefrom it does not follow that the soul is always actually 
active, just as the carpenter, even when furnished with the 
requisite instruments, may either work or not work, just as 
he pleases. 

Adhik. XVI (41, 42) teaches that the soul in its activity 
is dependent on the Lord who impels it with a view to its 
former actions. 

Adhik. XVII (43-53) treats of the relation of the indivi- 
dual soul to Brahman. Sutra 43 declares that the individual 
soul is a part {^ms 3 ) of Brahman, and the following Sutras 
show how that relation does not involve either that Brahman 
is affected by the imperfections, sufferings, &c. of the souls, 
or that one soul has to participate in the experiences of 
other souls. The two commentators of course take entirely 



Iviii 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


different views of the doctrine that the soul is a part of 
Brahman. According to Ramdnu^a the souls are in reality 
parts of Brahman ^ ; according to 6'ahkara the ' z.ms'A. ’ of 
the Sutra must be understood to mean ‘ d.ms2. iva,’ ‘ a part 
as it were;’ the one universal indivisible Brahman having 
no real parts, but appearing to be divided owing to its 
limiting adjuncts. — One Sutra (50) in this adhikarawa 
calls for special notice. According to S'ahkara the words 
'dbhdsa eva /&a’ mean '(the soul is) a mere reflection,’ 
which, as the commentators remark, is a statement of the 
so-called pratibimbavada, i.e. the doctrine that the so-called 
individual soul is nothing but the reflection of the Self in 
the buddhi ; while Sutra 43 had propounded the so-called 
avay^Medavdda, i.e. the doctrine that the soul is the highest 
Self in so far as limited by its adjuncts. — According to 
Ramdnu^a the abh§.sa of the Sutra has to be taken in the 

^ Gtvasya kartrztvaw parannapurush&,yattam ity xiklam. Icl&.nim kim aya;/; 
^iva/j parasm&d atyantabhinna/^ uta param eva brahma bhrS.ntam uta brahmaivo- 
p&dhyava,^/&/^innam atha brahm§;/'«xa iti sawjayyate xrutivipratipatte/5 sawrnya//. 
Nanit tadananyam S,rambba«a5abd^dibhya/i adhikaw tu bhedanirdejS.d ity 
atraiv^yam artho nir«ita/i. Satyawz sa eva iiS;nS.tvaikatvaiTutivipratipattyS; 
skshipya ^ivasya brahm^wjatvopap^danena vijeshato nirwiyate. Y^vad dhi 
^ivasya brahmawsalva/« na nir«itam tiva^ ^vasya brahmanosnanyatva?^ 
brahmawas tasmM adhikatvi;« /5a na pratitishMati. YAm t&vat prS.ptam. 
Atyanta?;z bhinna iti. Kuta/5. Gn^giiau dviv ity&dibhedanirderS,t. GnkgtzsyQV 
abhedarrutayas tv agninS. siM/5ed itivad viruddhS.rthapratipidanM aupa,5S,rikya/5, 
BrahmaMOsOTjo^iva ity api na s&dMya/z, ekavastvekadejavd/Cd hy awj'ajabda/^, 
^ivasya brahmaikadejatve tadgalS; dosht brahmazzi bhaveyu/z, Na /5a brahma- 
kha«4o ^iva ity az/zjatvopapatti/z khazz^faninarhatv&d brahmazza^ pr&gukta- 
doshaprasaDgl./5 kn, tasm&d atyantabhinnasya tadazzz^atvazzz durupap&dam. 
Yadv^ bhr^ntazzz brahmaiva ^iva/z. Kula,5. Tat tvam asi ayam ^tm& brah- 
mety^dibrahmitmabh&vopade^&t, ni,n§;tmatvavidinyas tu pratyakshldisiddhSlr- 
thS,iniv§.ditvM ananyathS.siddhS:dvaitopadejaparS,bhi/5 jrutibhi/z pratyaksh&dayaj 
^’a avidy§;ntargati/z khy&pyante. — AthavS; brahmaiv&n&dyup&dhyava/5/5/zinna?;z 
gha/i, Kuta/z. Tata eva brahmitmabh^vopader^t. Na /5&yam upMhir 
bhr&ntiparikalpita ita vaktiwz sakyam bandhamokshMivyavastliinupapatter. 
Ity evaw pripte s bhidhtyate. BrahmS;z;zja iti. Kuta/z. N§;aflvyapaderM 
anyath^ /5aikatvena vyapadej&,d ubhayath^ hi vyapadezo drzVyate. NS;nS;vya- 
paderas tivat srash^rz'tvasrz^yatva — niyantrztvaniy^myatva — sarva^zzatvS;- 
^zlatva— svMhinatvaparMhinatva — juddhatvSiruddhatva — kaly^zzagnzz3,karat- 
vaviparitatva — patitvaJeshatv&dibhir drzkyate. Anyath^ /5aibhedena vyapa- 
dejoxpi tat tvam asi ayam ^tm& brahmety&dibhir dmyate. Api dizakita- 
v&ditvam apy adhiyate eke, brahma d&rSi brahma dS.sS; brahmeme kitavS, ity 
fitharvazzikS brahraazzo d^rakitavSiditvam apy adhiyate, tatav /5a sarva^ivavy^- 
pitvena abhedo vyapadiryata ity artha/z. Evam iibhayavyapadezamukhyatva- 
siddhaye ^ivo-vyazzz brahmazzoxzzz.ra ity abhyupagantavya/z. 




INTRODUCTION. 


lix 


sfense ofjtietvabhasa, a fallacious argument, and the Sutra is 
explained as being directed against the reasoning of those 
Vedantins according to whom the soul is Brahman in so far 
as limited by non-real adjuncts h 

Pada IV. 

Adhik. I, II, III (1-4 ; 5-6 ; 7) teach that the prd/^as (by 
which generic name are denoted the buddhindriyas, karmen- 
driyas, and the manas) spring from Brahman; are eleven in 
number; and are of minute size (a;2u). 

Adhik. IV, V, VI (8 ; 9-13 ; 13) inform us also that the 
mukhya pra;2a, i.e. the vital air, is produced from Brahman ; 
that it is a principle distinct from air in general and from 
the prd;2as discussed above ; and that it is minute (a;2u). 

Adhik. VII and VIII (14-16; 17-19) teach that the 
prd?2as are superintended and guided in their activity by 
special divinities, and that they are independent principles, 
not mere modifications of the mukhya prawa. 

Adhik. IX (20-33) declares that the evolution of names 
and forms (the ndmarupavy^kara^^a) is the work, not of the 
individual soul, but of the Lord. 


THIRD ADHYAYA. 

Pada I. 

Adhik. I (1-7) teaches that the soul, when passing out of 
the body at the time of death, remains invested with the 
subtle material elements (bhutasCikshma) which serve as an 
abode to the pra22as attached to the soul. 

Adhik. II (8-1 1) shows that, when the souls of those who 
had enjoyed the reward of their good works in the moon 
descend to the earth in order to undergo a new embodi- 
ment, there cleaves to them a remainder (anujaya) of their 


J Nanii bhrtetabrahma^tvav&de s py avidy^k^'ztopSldhibhedad bliogavya- 
vasthMaya upapadyanta ata §;ha, ^bh&sa eva /6a. AkhawifaikarasaprakSramS.- 
tratvardpasya svarupatirodh§,napuivakopMhibbedopap&danahetur &bh&sa eva. 
PrakS,Jaikasvarupasya prakS:i'atirodhS,na?7z prak^anfUa eveti pr&g evopapftditam. 
AbbS,sS; eveti vS, pS,if/za/z, tatbd sati hetava S-bbStsS.^. 





lx 


vedanta-sOtras. 


former deeds which determines the nature of the new 
embodiment. 

Adhik. Ill discusses the fate after death of those 

whom their good works do not entitle to pass up to the 
moon. 

Adhik. IV, V, VI (aa; a3 ; a4-27) teach that the subtle 
bodies of the souls descending from the moon through the 
ether, air, &c., do not become identical with ether, air, &c., 
but only like them ; that the entire descent occupies a short 
time only ; and that, when the souls finally enter into plants 
and so on, they do not participate in the life of the latter, 
but are merely in external contact with them. 

Pada II. 

Adhik. I (i-6) treats of the soul in the dreaming state. 
According to Sankara the three first Sutras discuss the 
question whether the creative activity ascribed to the soul 
in some scriptural passages produces things as real as those 
by which the waking soul is surrounded, or not; Sutra 3 
settles the point by declaring that the creations of the 
dreaming soul are mere ‘Mdyd,’ since they do not fully 
manifest the character of real objects. Sutra 4 adds that 
dreams, although mere MayA, yet have a prophetic quality. 
Sutras 5 and 6 finally reply to the question why the soul, 
which after all is a part of the Lord and as such parti- 
cipates in his excellencies, should not be able to produce in 
its dreams a real creation, by the remark that the soul’s 
knowledge and power are obscured by its connexion with 
the gross body. 

The considerably diverging interpretation given of this 
adhikara^^a by Rdmdnu^a has the advantage of more 
closely connecting the Sutras with each other. According 
to him the question is not whether the creations of a dream 
are real or not, but whether they are the work of the indi- 
vidual soul or of the Lord acting within the soul. Sutras 
I and a set forth the pfirvapaksha. The creations of dreams 
(are the work of the individual soul) ; for thus Scripture 
declares: ‘And the followers of some j'^khds declare (the 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixi 


soul to be) a creator,’ &c. The third Sutra states the 
siddhdnta view: ‘But the creations of dreams are Maya, 
i.e. are of a wonderful nature (and as such cannot be 
effected by the individual soul), since (in this life) the nature 
(of the soul) is not fully manifested.’ Concerning the word 
‘ mayV Rdminu^a remarks, ‘ maya^-abdo hy kskaxydN^kl 
^anakajya kule ^at^ devamayeva nirmita it37’^dishu tatha 
dar^anat.’ The three remaining Sutras are exhibited in 
the S'ri-bh^shya in a different order, the fourth Sutra, 
according to S'ahkara, being the sixth according to Ramd- 
nu^a. Sutras 4 and 5 (according to Ramanuja’s numera- 
tion) are explained by Ramanuja very much in the same 
way as by vSahkara ; but owing to the former’s statement 
of the subject-matter of the whole adhikara?2a they connect 
themselves more intimately with the preceding Sutras than 
is possible on S'ahkara’s interpretation. In Sutra 6 (su/^aka.f 
kk hi) Ramdnuja sees a deduction from the siddhanta of 
the adhikara^za, ‘ Because the images of a dream are pro- 
duced by the highest Lord himself, therefore they have 
prophetic significance.’ 

Adhik. II teaches that in the state of deep dreamless 
sleep the soul abides within Brahman in the heart. 

Adhik. Ill (9) expounds the reasons entitling us to 
assume that the soul awakening from sleep is the same 
that went to sleep. — Adhik. IV (9) explains the nature of 
a swoon. 

Adhik. V (ii~3i) is, according to 6’ankara, taken up with 
the question as to the nature of the highest Brahman in 
which the individual soul is merged in the state of deep 
sleep. Sutra ii declares that twofold characteristics (viz. 
absence and presence of distinctive attributes, nirvLeshatva 
and savLeshatva) cannot belong to the highest Brahman 
even through its stations, i.e. its limiting adjuncts; since 
all passages which aim at setting forth Brahman’s nature 
declare it to be destitute of all distinctive attributes. — The 
fact, Sutra la continues, that in many passages Brahman 
is spoken of as possessing distinctive attributes is of no 
relevancy, since wherever there are mentioned limiting ad- 
juncts, on which all distinction depends, it is specially stated 



Ixii 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


that Brahman in itself is free from all diversity; and — Sutra 
13 adds — in some places the assumption of diversity is spe- 
cially objected to. — That Brahman is devoid of all form 
(Sutra 14), is the pre-eminent meaning of all Vedanta-texts 
setting forth Brahman’s nature. — That Brahman is repre- 
sented as having different forms, as it were, is due to its 
connexion with its (unreal) limiting adjuncts ; just as the 
light of the sun appears straight or crooked, as it were, 
according to the nature of the things he illuminates (15).— 
The Bnhadira;^2yaka expressly declares that Brahman is 
one uniform mass of intelligence (id); and the same is 
taught in other scriptural passages and in Smnti (17). — At 
the unreality of the apparent manifoldness of the Self, 
caused by the limiting adjuncts, aim those scriptural 
passages in which the Self is compared to the sun, which 
remains one although his reflections on the surface of the 
water are many (18). — Nor must the objection be raised 
that that comparison is unsuitable, because the Self is not 
material like the sun, and there are no real upidhis separate 
from it as the water is from the sun ; for the comparison 
merely means to indicate that, as the reflected image of 
the sun participates in the changes, increase, decrease, &c., 
which the water undergoes while the sun himself remains 
unaffected thereby, so the true Self is not affected by the 
attributes of the upadhis, while, in so far as it is limited by 
the latter, it is affected by them as it were (19, 20). — That 
the Self is within the upadhis, Scripture declares (21). 

From the above explanation of this important adhikara/^a 
the one given in the .Sri-bhashya differs totally. According 
to Rdmanu^a the adhikara;^a raises the question whether 
the imperfections clinging to the individual soul (the dis- 
cussion of which has now come to an end) affect also the 
highest Lord who, according to Scripture, abides within the 
soul as antaryimin. ‘ Notwithstanding the abode (of the 
highest Self within the soul) (it is) not (affected by the soul’s 
imperfections) because everywhere (the highest Self is repre- 
sented) as having twofold characteristics (viz, being, on one 
hand, free from all evil, apahatapdpman, vi^ara, vimn'tyu, 
&c., and, on the other hand, endowed with all auspicious 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixiii 


qualities, satyakama, satyasawkalpa, &c.) (ii). — Should it 
be objected that, just as the soul although essentially free 
from evil — according to the Pra^apativakya in the Kkkn- 
dogya — yet is liable to imperfections owing to its connexion 
with a variety of bodies, so the antaryamin also is affected 
by abiding within bodies ; we deny this because in every 
section of the chapter referring to the antaryamin (in the 
Brzhadira7zyaka) he is expressly called the Immortal, the 
ruler within ; which shows him to be free from the short- 
comings of the^iva (12). — Some, moreover, expressly assert 
that, although the Lord and the soul are within one body, 
the soul only is imperfect, not the Lord (dva supaiv^a sayu^a 
sakhiyd) (13). — Should it be said that, according to the 
KhknAogya., Brahman entered together with the souls into 
the elements previously to the evolution of names and 
forms, and hence participates in the latter, thus becoming 
implicated in the sa?;zsira ; we reply that Brahman, although 
connected with such and such forms, is in itself devoid of form, 
since it is the principal element (agent; pradhana) in the 
bringing about of names and forms (according to ‘ dk^jo ha 
vai nimarupayor nirvahitd’) (14). — But does not the pas- 
sage ^ satya?;^ ^; 7 ^Lnam anantam brahma ’ teach that Brah- 
man is nothing but light (intelligence) without any difference, 
and does not the passage 'neti neti’ deny of it all qualities ? 
— As in order, we reply, not to deprive passages as the one 
quoted from the Taittiiiya of their purport, we admit that 
Brahman’s nature is light, so we must also admit that 
Brahman is satyasa^'/^kalpa, and so on ; for if not, the pas- 
sages in which those qualities are asserted would become 
purportless (15)* — Moreover the Taittiriya passage onlj'" 
asserts so much, viz. the praka^arupatS, of Brahman, and 
does not deny other qualities (16). — And the passage ‘ neti 
neti’ will be discussed later on. — The ubhayalihgatva of 
Brahman in the sense assigned above is asserted in many 
places of vSruti and Smrfti (i7).~Because Brahman although 
abiding in many places is not touched by their imperfec- 
tions, the similes of the reflected sun, of the ether limited 
by jars, &c., are applicable to it (18).— Should it be said 
that the illustration is not an appropriate one, because the 



VEDANTA-S^JTRAS. 


Ixiv 


sun is apprehended in the water erroneously only while the 
antaryamin really abides within all things, and therefore 
must be viewed as sharing their defects (19) ; we reply tha*t 
what the simile means to negative is merely that Brahman 
should, owing to its inherence in many places, participate in 
the increase, decrease, and so on, of its abodes. On this 
view both similes are appropriate (20}. — Analogous similes 
we observe to be employed in ordinary life, as when we 
compare a man to a lion (21). 

Sutras 22-30 constitute, according to 5 ahkara, a new 
adhikara;m (VI), whose object it is to show that the clause 
‘ not so, not so ’ (neti neti ; Bnliadar.) negatives, not Brah- 
man itself, but only the two forms of Brahman described in 
the preceding part of the chapter. Sutras 23-26 further 
dwell on Brahman being in reality devoid of all distinctive 
attributes which are altogether due to the upadhis. The 
last four Sutras return to the question how, Brahman being 
one only, the souls are in so many places spoken of as 
different from it, and, two explanatory hypotheses having 
been rejected, the conclusion is arrived at that all difference 
is unreal, due to fictitious limiting adjuncts. 

According to Ramdnu^a, Sutras 22 ff. continue the dis- 
cussion started in Sutra 1 1. How, the question is asked, can 
the ubhayalihgatva of Brahman be maintained considering 
that the ‘not so, not so’ of the Bnhadira7«yaka denies of 
Brahman all the previously mentioned modes (prakdra), so 
that it can only be called that which is (sanmatra) ? — The 
reply given in Sutra 22 is that ‘not so, not so’ does not 
deny of Brahman the distinctive qualities or modes declared 
previously (for it would be senseless at first to teach them, 
and finally to deny them again ^), but merely denies the 
prakntaitavattva, the previously stated limited nature of 
Brahman, i. e. it denies that Brahman possesses only the 
previously mentioned qualifications. With this agrees, that 
subsequently to ‘neti neti’ Scripture itself enunciates 
further qualifications of Brahman. — That Brahman as stated 


^ All the meptioned modes of Brahman are known from Scripture only, not 
from ordinary experience. If the latter were the case, then, and then only, 
Scripture might at first refer to them ‘ anuvldena,’ and finally negative them. 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixv 


above is not the object of any other means of proof but Scrip- 
ture is confirmed in Sutra ‘Scripture declares Brahman 
to be the non-manifest/ — And the intuition (sdkshatkara) 
of Brahman ensues only upon its sa7;^radhana, i.e. upon its 
being perfectly pleased by the worshipper’s devotion, as 
Scripture and Smrz'ti declare (24). — That this interpretation 
of ‘neti’ is the right one, is likewise shown by the fact that in 
the same way as prakd^a, luminousness, ^/zana, intelligence, 
&c., so also the quality of being differentiated by the world 
(prapa^y^avriishifatd) is intuited as non-different, i.e. as like- 
wise qualifying Brahman ; and that praka^a, and so on, 
characterise Brahman, is known through repeated practice 
(on the part of rz'shis like Vamadeva) in the work of 
sa?;zrddhana mentioned before (35). — For all these reasons 
Brahman is connected with the infinite, i.e. the infinite 
number of auspicious qualities ; for thus the twofold indica- 
tions (linga) met with in Scripture are fully justified (26 ). — 
In what relation, then, does the a^id vastu, i.e. the non- 
sentient matter, which, according to the Brzhadara;zyaka, 
is one of the forms of Brahman, stand to the latter? — Non- 
sentient beings might, in the first place, be viewed as special 
arrangements (samsthanavijesha,^) of Brahman, as the coils 
are of the body of the snake ; for Brahman is designated 
as both, i.e. sometimes as one with the world (Brahman is 
all this, &c.), sometimes as different from it (Let me enter 
into those elements, &c.) (27). — Or, in the second place, 
the relation of the two might be viewed as analogous to 
that of light and the luminous object which are two and 
yet one, both being fire (28). — Or, in the third place, the 
relation is like that stated before, i.e. the material world 
is, like the individual souls (whose case was discussed in 
II, 3, 43), a part — amsa . — of Brahman (39, 30). 

Adhik. VII (31-37) explains how some metaphorical 
expressions, seemingly implying that there is something 
different from Brahman, have to be truly understood. 

Adhik. VIII (38-41) teaches that the reward of works is 
not, as 6^aimini opines, the independent result of the works 
acting through the so-called apurva, but is allotted by the 
Lord. 

[34] e 



Ixvi 


vedAnta-siDtras. 


Pada III. 

With the third pada of the second adhyaya a new 
section of the work begins, whose task it is to describe 
how the individual soul is enabled by meditation on Brah- 
man to obtain final release. The first point to be deter- 
mined here is what constitutes a meditation on Brahman, 
and, more particularly, in what relation those parts of 
the Upanishads stand to each other which enjoin identical 
or partly identical meditations. The reader of the Upa- 
nishads cannot fail to observe that the texts of the different 
jAkhas contain many chapters of similar, often nearly iden- 
tical, contents, and that in some cases the text of even one 
and the same .rakh^ exhibits the same matter in more 
or less varied forms. The reason of this clearly is that 
the common stock of religious and philosophical ideas 
which were in circulation at the time of the composition of 
the Upanishads found separate expression in the different 
priestly communities ; hence the same speculations, legends, 
&c. reappear in various places of the sacred Scriptures in 
more or less differing dress. Originally, when we may 
suppose the members of each Vedic school to have confined 
themselves to the study of their own sacred texts, the fact 
that the texts of other schools contained chapters of similar 
contents would hardly appear to call for special note or 
comment; not any more than the circumstance that the 
sacrificial performances enjoined on the followers of some 
particular JakhA were found described with greater or 
smaller modifications in the books of other jikhas also. 
But already at a very early period, at any rate long before 
the composition of the Vedanta-sutras in their present 
form, the Vedic theologians must have apprehended the 
truth that, in whatever regards sacrificial acts, one i-Akha may 
indeed safely follow its own texts, disregarding the texts 
of all 'other jakhas ; that, however, all texts which aim at 
throwing light on the nature of Brahman and the I'elation 
to it of the human soul must somehow or other be com- 
bined into one consistent systematical whole equally valid 
for the followers of all Vedic schools. For, as we have had 
occasion to remark above, while acts may be perform*ed 



INTRODUCTION. . 


Ixvii 


by different individuals in, different ways, cognition is de- 
fined by the nature of the object cognised, and hence can 
be one only, unless it ceases to be true cognition. Hence 
the attempts, on the one hand, of discarding by skilful 
interpretation all contradictions met with in the sacred 
text, and, on the other hand, of showing what sections of 
the different Upanishads have to be viewed as teaching the 
same matter, and therefore must be combined in one medi- 
tation. The latter is the special task of the present pada. 

Adhik. I and II (1-4 ,* 5} are concerned with the question 
whether those vidyds, which are met with in identical or 
similar form in more than one sacred text, are to be con- 
sidered as constituting several vidyds, or one vidyi only. 
Jjahkara remarks that the question affects only those vidy^s 
whose object is the qualified Brahman ; for the knowledge 
of the non-qualified Brahman, which is of an absolutely 
uniform nature, can of course be one only wherever it is 
set forth. But things lie differently in those cases where 
the object of knowledge is the sagu;2am brahma or some 
outward manifestation of Brahman ; for the qualities as 
well as manifestations of Brahman are many. Anticipating 
the subject of a later adhikara;^a, we may take for an 
example the so-called Skndi\Y 3 .vldyk which is met with in 
Kh. Up. Ill, 14, again — in an abridged form — in Brf. Up. 
V, 6, and, moreover, in the tenth book of the Aatapatha- 
br^hmawa (X, 6, 3). The three passages enjoin a medita- 
tion on Brahman as possessing certain attributes, some of 
which are specified in all the three texts (as, for instance, 
manomayatva, bh^rupatva), while others are peculiar to 
each separate passage (pra;?ai-anratva and satyasawzkalpatva, 
for instance, being mentioned in the iT/^andogya Upanishad 
and .Satapatha-brdhma/za, but not in the Bnhadira7?yaka 
Upanishad, which, on its part, specifies sarvavafftva, not 
referred to in the two other texts). Here, then, there is room 
for a doubt whether the three passages refer to one object 
of knowledge or not. To the devout Vedintin the question 
is not a purely theoretical one, but of immediate practical 
interest. For if the three texts are to be held apart, there are 
three different meditations to be gone through ; if, on the 


e 2 



Ixviii 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


Other hand, the vidya is one only, all the different qualities 
of Brahman mentioned in the three passages have to be 
combined into one meditation. — The decision is here, as in 
all similar cases, in favour of the latter alternative. A 
careful examination of the three passages shows that the 
object of meditation is one only ; hence the meditation also 
is one only, comprehending all the attributes mentioned in 
the three texts. 

Adhik. Ill ( 5 - 8 ) discusses the case of vidyis being really 
separate, although apparently identical. The examples 
selected are the udgithavidyds of the A 7 zandogya U panishad 
(I, 1-3) and the Br/had^razzyaka Upanishad (I, 3), which, 
although showing certain similarities — such as bearing the 
same name and the udgitha being in both identified with 
prazza — yet are to be held apart, because the subject of the 
/sT/z^ndogya vidya is not the whole udgitha but only the 
sacred syllable Om, while the Bnhad^razzyaka Upanishad 
represents the whole udgitha as the object of meditation. 

Sfitra 9 constitutes in Sankara’s view a new adhikarazza 
(IV), proving that in the passage, ‘ Let a man meditate ’ 
(/^/z. Up. I, I, i), the Ozzzkara and the udgitha stand in the 
relation of one specifying the other, the meaning being, 

‘ Let a man meditate on that Ozzzk^ra which,’ &c. — Ac- 
cording to R^manii^a’s interpretation, which seems to fall 
in more satisfactorily with the form and the wording of the 
Sutra, the latter merely furnishes an additional argument 
for the conclusion arrived at in the preceding adhikarazza. — 
Adhik. V (10) determines the unity of the so-called prazza- 
vidyds and the consequent comprehension of the different 
qualities of the pr 4 zza, which are mentioned in the different 
texts, within one meditation. 

Adhik. VI comprises, according to Sankara, the Sutras 
11-13. The point to be settled is whether in all the medi- 
tations on Brahman all its qualities are to be included or 
only those mentioned in the special vidya. The decision 
is that the essential and unalterable attributes of Brahman, 
such as bliss and knowledge, are to be taken into account 
everywhere, while those which admit of^a more or less (as, 
for instance, the attribute of having joy for its head, men- 




INTRODUCTIOM. 


Ixix 


tloned in the Taitt. Up.) are confined to special medita- 
tions. — Adhik. VII (14, 15), according to .Sankara, aims at 
proving that the object of Ka//^a Up. Ill, 10, ii is one 
only, viz. to show that the highest Self is higher than 
everything, so that the passage constitutes one vidyd only. 
— Adhik. VIII (16, 17) determines, according to Sankara, 
that the Self spoken of in Ait. Ar. II, 4, i, i is not a lower 
form of the Self (the so-called sfitratman), but the highest 
Self ; the discussion of that point in this place being due to 
the wish to prove that the attributes of the highest Self 
have to be comprehended in the Aitareyaka meditation. 

According to Ramanu^^a the Sutras 11-17 constitute a 
single adhikarawa whose subject is the same as that of 
Sankara’s sixth adhikarawa. Sutras 11-13 are, on the 
whole, explained as by Saiikara ; Sutra 12, however, is 
said to mean, ‘ Such attributes as having joy for its head, 
Sz;c. are not to be viewed as qualities of Brahman, and 
therefore not to be included in every meditation ; for if 
" they were admitted as qualities, difference would be intro- 
duced into Brahman’s nature, and that would involve a 
more or less on Brahman’s part.’ Sfitras 14-17 continue 
the discussion of the passage about the priya^irastva. — If 
priyajirastva, &c. are not to be viewed as real qualities of 
Brahman, for what purpose does the text mention them ? — 
‘Because,’ Sutra 14 replies, ‘there is no other purpose, 
Scripture mentions them for the purpose of pious medita- 
tion.’ — But how is it known that the Self of delight is the 
highest Self? (owing to which you maintain that having 
limbs, head, &c. cannot belong to it as attributes.) — ‘ Be- 
cause,’ Sutra 15 replies, ‘ the term “Self” (atma anandamaya) 
is applied to it.’ — But in the previous parts of the chapter 
the term Self (in dtma pra 72 amaya, &c.) is applied to non- 
Selfs also ; how then do you know that in atma dnanda- 
maya it denotes the real Self? — ‘The term Self,’ Sfitra 16 
replies, ‘ is employed here to denote the highest Self as in 
many other passages (itma vd idam eka, &c.), as we con- 
clude from the subsequent passage, viz. he wished, May I 
be many.’— But, an objection is raised, does not the con- 
text show that the term ‘ Self,’ which in all the preceding 



Ixx 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


clauses about the pra^amaya, &c. denoted something other 
than the Self, does the same in inandamaya atman, and 
is not the context of greater weight than a subsequent 
passage? — To this question asked in the former half of 17 
(anvayad iti i^et) the latter half replies, ‘ Still it denotes the 
Self, owing to the affirmatory statement,’ i. e. the fact of the 
highest Self having been affirmed in a previous passage 
also, viz. II, I, ‘ From that Self sprang ether.’ 

Adhik. IX (t 8) discusses a minor point connected with 
the pra^zasai'/zvada. — The subject of Adhik. X (19) has 
been indicated already above under Adhik. I. — Adhik. XI 
(ao-23) treats of a case of a contrary nature ; in Brz. Up. 
V, 5, Brahman is represented first as abiding in the sphere of 
the sun, and then as abiding within the eye ; we therefore, 
in spite of certain counter-indications, have to do with two 
separate vidyas. — Adhik. XII (23) refers to a similar case ; 
certain attributes of Brahman mentioned in the Rdzzaya- 
niya-khila have not to be introduced into the corresponding 
.ff'/zandogya vidyd, because the stated difference of Brah- 
man’s abode involves difference of vidyi. — Adhik. XIII 
(24) treats of another instance of two vidyis having to be 
held apart, 

Adhik. XIV (25) decides that certain detached mantras 
and brahmazza passages met with in the beginning of some 
Upanishads — as, for instance, a brahmazza about the mahi- 
vrata ceremony at the beginning of the Aitareya-irazzyaka 
— do, notwithstanding their position which seems to connect 
them with the brahmavidya, not belong to the latter, since 
they show unmistakable signs of being connected with 
sacrificial acts. 

Adhik. XV (26) treats of the passages stating that the 
man dying in the possession of true knowledge shakes off 
all his good and evil deeds, and affirms that a statement, 
made in some of those passages offiy, to the effect that the 
■good and evil deeds pass over to the friends and enemies 
of the deceased, is valid for all the passages. 

Sutras 27-30 constitute, according to Sankara, two adhi- 
karazzas of which the former (XVI ; 27, 28) decides that the 
shaking off of the good and evil deeds takes place — not, as 


INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxi 


the Kaush. Up. states, on the road to Brahman’s world — 
but at the moment of the soul’s departure from the body ; 
the Kaushitaki statement is therefore not to be taken 
literally. — The latter adhikara^a (XVII ; 39, 30) treats of 
the cognate question whether the soul that has freed itself 
from its deeds proceeds in all cases on the road of the gods ^ 
(as said in the Kaush. Up.), or not. The decision is that he 
only whose knowledge does not pass beyond the sagu^mm 
brahma proceeds on that road, while the soul of him who 
knows the nirgu7^am brahma becomes one with it without 
moving to any other place. 

The 5 ri-bhashya treats the four Sutras as one adhikarawa 
whose two first Sutras are explained as by Xahkara, while 
Sutra 29 raises an objection to the conclusion arrived at, 

‘ the going (of the soul on the path of the gods) has a sense 
only if the soul’s freeing itself from its works takes place 
in both ways, i.e. partly at the moment of death, partly on 
the road to Brahman ; for otherwise there would be a con- 
tradiction ’ (the contradiction being that, if the soul’s works 
were all shaken off at the moment of death, the subtle body 
would likewise perish at that moment, and then the bodi- 
less soul would be unable to proceed on the path of the 
gods). — To this Sutra 30 replies, ‘ The complete shaking off 
of the works at the moment of death is possible, since 
matters of that kind are observed in Scripture,’ i. e. since 
scriptural passages show that even he whose works are 
entirely annihilated, and who has manifested himself in his 
true shape, is yet connected with some kind of body ; com- 
pare the passage, ‘ para^/z gyoth' upasampadya svena rupe- 
;^ibhinishpad3^ate sa tatra paryeti kriirfan ramamana^ sa 
svar^(:f bhavati tasya sarveshu lokeshu kama.^aro bhavati.’ 
That* subtle body is not due to karman, but to the soul’s 
vidyamahatmya. — That the explanation of the S'ri-bhishya ■ 
agrees with the text as well as .Sankara’s, a comparison of 
the two will show ; especially forced is .Sankara’s explana- 
tion of ‘ arthavattvam ubhayatha,’ which is said to mean 
that there is arthavattva in one case, and non-arthavattva 
in the other case. 

The next Sutra (31) constitutes an adhikara?i;a (XVIII) 



Ixxii 


VEDANTA-st)TRAS. 


deciding that the road of the gods is followed not only by 
those knowing the vidyas which specially mention the 
going on that road, but by all who are acquainted with the 
sagu«a-vidyas of Brahman. — The explanation given in the 
6'ri-bhashya (in which Sutras 31 and ^2 have exchanged 
places) is similar, with the difference however that all who 
meditate on Brahman — without any reference to the dis- 
tinction of nirguwa and sagu^^a — proceed after death on the 
road of the gods. (The Sri-bhashya reads ‘sarvesham,’ 
i. e. all worshippers, not ‘ sarvasam,’ all sagu;«a-vidyAs.) 

Adhik. XIX (32) decides' that, although the general effect 
of true knowledge is release from all forms of body, yet 
even such beings as have reached perfect knowledge may 
retain a body for the purpose of discharging certain offices. 
— In the Sri-bhashya, where the Sutra follows immediately 
on Sutra 30, the adhikara;za determines, in close connexion 
with 30, that, although those who know Brahman as a rule 
divest themselves of the gross body — there remaining only 
a subtle body which enables them to move — and no longer 
experience pleasure and pain, yet certain beings, although 
having reached the cognition of Brahman, remain invested 
with a gross body, and hence liable to pleasure and pain 
until they have fully performed certain duties. 

Adhik. XX (33) teaches that the negative attributes of 
Brahman mentioned in some vidyas — such as its being not 
gross, not subtle, &c. — are to be included in all meditations 
on Brahman. — Adhik. XXI (34) determines that K^^'/za Up. 
Ill, I, and Mu. Up. Ill, i, constitute one vidya only, because 
both passages refer to the highest Brahman. According 
to Ramdnu^a the Sutra contains a reply to an objection 
raised against the conclusion arrived at in the preceding 
Sutra. — Adhik. XXII (35, 36) maintains that the two 
passages, Bri. Up. Ill, 4 and III, 5, constitute one vidya 
only, the object of knowledge being in both cases Brahman 
viewed as the inner Self of all. — Adhik. XXIII (37) on the 
contrary decides that the passage Ait. Ar. II, 2, 4, 6 con- 
stitutes not one but two meditations. — Adhik. XXIV (38) 
again determines that the vidya of the True contained in 
Bri Up. V, 4, 5, is one only. — According to Ramdnu^a, 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxiil 


Sfitras 35-38 constitute one adhikarafza only whose subject 
is the same as that of XXII according to 5 ahkara. 

Adhik. XXV (39) proves that the passages Kh, Up. 
VIII, I and Up. IV, 4, 1% cannot constitute one vidya, 
since the former refers to Brahman as possessing qualities, 
while the latter is concerned with Brahman as destitute of 
qualities. — Adhik. XXVI (40, 41) treats, according to San- 
kara, of a minor question connected with Kh. Up. V, ii ff. 
— According to the Ari-bhashya, Sutras 39-41 form one 
adhikarawa whose first Sutra reaches essentially the same 
conclusion as .Sankara under 39. Sutras 40, 41 thereupon 
discuss a general question concerning the meditations on 
Brahman. The qualities, an opponent is supposed to re- 
mark, which in the two passages discussed are predicated of 
Brahman — such as vai'itva, satyakaniatva, &c. — cannot be 
considered real (p^ram^rthika), since other passages (sa esba 
neti neti, and the like) declare Brahman to be devoid of all 
qualities. Hence those qualities cannot be admitted into 
meditations whose purpose is final release. — To this objec- 
tion Sutra 40 replies, '(Those qualities) are not to be left out 
(from the meditations on Brahman), since (in the passages 
under discussion as well as in other passages) they are stated 
with emphasis — But, another objection is raised, Scrip- 
tuie says that he who meditates on Brahman as satyakama, 
&c. obtains a mere perishable reward, viz. the world of the 
fathers, and similar results specified in Kh. Up. VIII, 3; 
hence, he who is desirous of final release, must not include 
those qualities of Brahman in his meditation. — To this ob- 
jection Sutia 41 replies, ‘ Because that (i. e. the free roaming 
in all the woilds, the world of the fathers, &c.) is stated as 
proceeding therefrom (i. e. the approach to Brahman which 
is final release) in the case of (the soul) which has appi-oachcd 
Brahman ; ’ (therefore a person desirous of release, may 
include satyakdmatva, &c. in his meditations.) 


Ramann^a has here some strong remarks on the improbability of qualities 
emphatically attributed to Brahman, in more than one passage, having to be set 
aside m any meditation: ‘Na /{>a matapitnsahasrebhyo ^ pi vatsalataraw 
jaslra?;; piatarakavad aparamarlhikan nirasanJyau giiwaii prama«ftntaraprati- 
pannau adarewpadwya saOTsara.t-akraparivartanena pilrvam eva barabhramva- 
raanan mumiikshun bhfiyo s pi bhramayilum alain.’ 



Ixxiv 


VEDlNTA-StjTRAS. 


Adhik. XXVII (42) decides that those meditations which 
are connected with certain matters forming constituent parts 
of sacrificial actions, are not to be considered as perma- 
nently requisite parts of the latter. — Adhilc. XXVIII (43) 
teaches that, in a Brf. Up. passage and a similar Kh. Up. 
passage, VayU and Pra;za are not to be identified, but to be 
held apart. — Adhik. XXIX (44-52) decides that the fire- 
altars made of mind, &c., which are mentioned in the Agni- 
rahasya, do not constitute parts of the sacrificial action 
(so that the mental, &c. construction of the altar could 
optionally be substituted for the actual one), but merely 
subjects of meditations. 

Adhik. XXX (53,54) treats, according to Xaiikara, in the 
way of digression, of the question whether to the Self an 
existence independent of the body can be assigned, or not 
(as the Materialists maintain). — According to the Xri-bha- 
shya the adhikara/^a does not refer to this wide question, 
but is concerned with a point more immediately connected 
with the meditations on Brahman, viz. the question as to 
the form under which, in those meditations, the Self of the 
meditating devotee has to be viewed. The two Siitras 
then have to be translated as follows : ‘ Some (maintain 
that the soul of the devotee has, in meditations, to be 
viewed as possessing those attributes only which belong to 
it in its embodied state, such as ^watrftva and the like), 
because the Self is (at the time of meditation) in the body.’ 
— The next Sutra rejects this view, ‘ This is not so, but the 
separatedness (i. e. the pure isolated state in which the Self 
is at the time of final release when it is freed from all evil, 
&c.) (is to be transferred to the meditating Self), because 
that will be ^ the state (of the Self in the condition of final 
release).’ 

Adhik. XXXI (55, 56) decides that meditations connected 
with constituent elements of the sacrifice, such as the 
udgitha, are, in spite of difference of svara in the udgitha, 
&c., valid, not only for .that jdkhd in which the medita- 
tion actually is met with, but for all .rikhds. — Adhik. 

^ The Ari-bh&shya as well as several other commentaries reads tadbh&va- 
bh&vitvat for Aahkara’s tadbhavS;bh§,vitvS,l. 




INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxv 


XXXII (57) decides that the Vawvanara Agni of Kh. Up. 
V, II ff. is to be meditated upon as a whole, not in his 
single parts.— Adhik. XXXIII (58) teaches that those 
meditations which refer to one subject, but as distinguished 
by different qualities, have to be held apart as different 
meditations. Thus the daharavidyi, Si.udi]y 3 ,vi<iy^, &c. 
remain 'separate. 

Adhik. XXXIV (59) teaches that those meditations on 
Brahman for which the texts assign one and the same fruit 
are optional, there being no reason for their being cumu- 
lated. — Adhik. XXXV (60) decides that those meditations, 
on the other hand, which refer to special wishes may be 
cumulated or optionally employed according to choice. — 
Adhik. XXXVI (61-66) extends this conclusion to the 
meditations connected with constituent elements of action, 
such as the udgitha. 


PAda IV. 

Adhik. I (1-17) proves that the knowledge of Brahman 
is not kratvartha, i. e. subordinate to action, but indepen- 
dent. — Adhik. II (18-20) confirms this conclusion by show- 
ing that the state of the pravra^ins is enjoined by the 
sacred law, and that for them vidya only is prescribed, 
not action. — Adhik. Ill (21, 2a) decides that certain clauses 
forming part of vidyas are not mere stutis (arthavadas),but 
themselves enjoin the meditation. — The legends recorded 
in the Ved^nta-texts are not to be used as subordinate 
members of acts, but have the purpose of glorifying — as 
arthavadas — the injunctions with which they are connected 
(Adhik. IV, 23, 24). — For all these reasons the urdhvare- 
tasaA require no actions but only knowledge (Adhik. V, 
25). — Nevertheless the actions enjoined by Scripture, such 
as sacrifices, conduct of certain kinds, &c., are required as 
conducive to the rise of vidya in the mind (Adhik. VI, 26, 
27). — Certain relaxations, allowed by Scripture, of the laws 
regarding food, are meant only for cases of extreme need 
(Adhik. VII, 28-31). — The ajramakarma;?! are obligatory 
on him also who does not strive after mukti (Adhik. VIII, 



Ixxvi 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


33-35). — Those also who, owing to poverty and so on, are 
ana.rrama have claims to vidya (Adhik. IX, 3*5-39). — An 
urdhvaretas cannot revoke his vow (Adhik. X, 40). — Ex- 
piation of the fall of an urdhvaretas (Adhik. XI, 41, 43). — 
Exclusion of the fallen urdhvaretas in certain cases (Adhik. 
XII, 43). — Those meditations, which are connected with 
subordinate members of the sacrifice, are the business of 
the priest, not of the ya^amana (Adhik. XIII, 44-46), — 
B?"?. Up. Ill, 5, I enjoins mauna as a third in addition to 
balya and paw^^itya (Adhik. XIV, 47-49). — By balya is to 
be understood a childlike innocent state of mind (Adhik. 
XV, 50). 

Sutras 51 and 53 discuss, according to Ramanuja, the 
question when the vidya, which is the result of the means 
described in III, 4, arises. Sutra 51 treats of that vidya 
whose result is mere exaltation (abhyudaya), and states 
that ‘ it takes place in the present life, if there is not 
present an obstacle in the form of a prabalakarmdntara (in 
which latter case the vidyi arises later only), on account of 
Scripture declaring this (in various passages).’ — Sutra 53, 
‘Thus there is also absence of a definite rule as to (the 
time of origination of) that knowledge whose fruit is release, 
it being averred concerning that one also that it is in the 
same condition (i.e. of sometimes having an obstacle, some- 
times not). — Xankara, who treats the two Sutras as two 
adhikaraz/as, agrees as to the explanation of 51, while, 
putting a somewhat forced interpretation on 53, he makes 
it out to mean that a more or less is possible only in the 
case of -the sagu?2a-vidyas. 


FOURTH ADHYAYA. 

PAda I, 

Adhikara;^a I (i, 3). — The meditation on the Atman 
enjoined by Scripture is not an act to be accomplished once 
only, but is to be repeated again and again. 

Adhik. II (3). — The devotee engaged in meditation on 
Brahman is to view it as constituting his own Self. 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxvii 


Adhik. Ill (4). — To the rule laid down in the preceding 
adhikarawa the so-called pratikopdsanas, i.e. those medita- 
tions in which Brahman is viewed under a symbol or out- 
ward manifestation (as, for instance, mano brahmety updstta) 
constitute an exception, i.e. the devotee is not to consider 
the pratika as constituting his own Self. 

Adhik. IV (5). — In the pratikop^sanas the pratika is to 
be meditatively viewed as being one with Brahman, not 
Brahman as being one with the pratika. — Raminu^a takes 
Sutra 5 as simply giving a reason for the decision arrived 
at under Sutra 4, and therefore as not constituting a new 
adhikara^^a. 

Adhik. V (6). — In meditations connected with constitu- 
tives of sacrificial works (as, for instance, ya evcisau tapati 
tarn udgitham upisita) the idea of the divinity, &c. is to be 
transferred to the sacrificial item, not vice versa. In the 
example quoted, for instance, the udgitha is to be viewed as 
Aditya, not Aditya as the udgitha. ^ 

Adhik. VI (7-10). — The devotee is to carry on his medi- 
tations in a sitting posture, — 5 ankara maintains that this 
rule does not apply to those meditations whose result is 
sa;;2yagdar5ana ; but the Sutra gives no hint to that effect. 

Adhik. VII (ii). — The meditations may be carried on at any 
time, and in any place, favourable to concentration of mind. 

Adhik. VIII (13). — The meditations are to be continued 
until death. — .Sankara again maintains that those medita- 
tions which lead to sa;;zyagdarjana are excepted. 

Adhik. IX (13). — When through those m.editations the 
knowledge of Brahman has been reached, the vidvdn is no 
longer affected by the consequences of either past or future 
evil deeds. 

Adhik. X (14). — Good deeds likewise lose their efficiency. 
— The literal translation of' the Sutra is, ' There is likewise 
non-attachment (to the vidvan) of the other (i.e. of the 
deeds other than the evil ones, i. e. of good deeds), but on 
the fall (of the body, i.e. when death takes place).’ The 
last words of the Sutra, ‘ but on the fall,’ are separated by 
Sankara from the preceding part of the Sutra and interpreted 
to mean, ‘ when death takes place (there results mukti of 


Ixxviii 


vedAnta-sOtras. , 


the vidvin, who through his knowledge has freed himself 
from the bonds of works).’ — According to Rdmdnu^a the 
whole Sutra simply means, ‘ There is likewise non-attach- 
ment of good deeds (not at once when knowledge is 
reached), but on the death of the vidvin k’ 

Adhik. XI (15). — The non-operation of works stated in 
the two preceding adhikara?^as holds good only in the case 
of anarabdhakdrya works, i. e. those works which have not 
yet begun to produce their effects, while it does not extend 
to the arabdhakarya works oh which the present existence of 
the devotee depends. 

Adhik. XII (16, 17). — From the rule enunciated in Adhik. 
X are excepted such sacrificial performances as are enjoined 
permanently (nitya) : so, for instance, the agnihotra, for 
they promote the origination of knowledge. 

Adhik. XIII (18). — The origination of knowledge is 
promoted also by such sacrificial works as are not accom- 
panied with the knowledge of the updsanas referring to the 
different members of those works. 

Adhik. XIV (19). — The arabdhakarya works have to be 
worked out fully by the fruition of their effects ; whereupon 
the vidvan becomes united with Brahman. — The •' bhoga ’ 
of the Sutra is, according to Xankara, restricted to the 
present existence of the devotee, since the complete know- 
ledge obtained by him destroys the nescience which other- 
wise would lead to future embodiments. According to 
Rdmdnu^a a number of embodied existences may have to 
be gone through before the effects of the arabdhakdrya 
works are exhausted. 


Pada II. 

This and the two remaining padas of the fourth adhy§.ya 
describe the fate of the vidvan after death. According to 
Xahkara we have to distinguish the vidvan who possesses 
the highest knowledge, viz. that he is one with the highest 


^ Nanu vidushospi setikartavyatakop&sananirvnttaye vr/sh;fyannS.diphal^' 
nish^tny eva katha?;z tesli&?;z virodhM vinft^a u-5yate. TatiS,ha pate tv iti. 
^’artrap^te tu tesh&z/z vin&xa-^ jartrap&lM firdhvawz tu vidytoiiguwadr/shii'a- 
phal&ni sitkm^ni iia.ryantity artha/5. 





INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxix 


Brahman, and the vidvan who knows only the lower Brah- 
man, and have to refer certain Sutras to the former and 
others to the latter. According to Rimanu^a the vidvan 
is one only. 

Adhik. I, II, III (i-d). — On the death of the vidvin (i.e. 
of him who possesses the lower knowledge, according to 
Sankara) his senses are merged in the manas, the manas in 
the chief vital air (prkna.), the vital air in the individual 
soul (^iva), the soul in the subtle elements. — According to 
R^mdnu^a the combination (sampatti) of the senses with 
the manas, &c. is a mere conjunction (sawyoga), not a 
merging (lay a). 

Adhik. IV (7). — The vidvdn (i.e. according to .Sankara, 
he who possesses the lower knowledge) and the avidvdn, 
,i.e. he who does not possess any knowledge of Brahman, 
pass through the same stages (i.e. those described hitherto) 
up to the entrance of the soul, together with the subtle 
elements, and so on into the na^is. — The vidvdn also 
remains connected with the subtle elements because he has 
not yet completely destroyed avidyi, so that the immor- 
tality which Scripture ascribes to him {a-mritsitvam hi vidvan 
abhyamute) is only a relative one. — Ramdnu^a quotes the 
following text regarding the immortality of the vidvan : 

‘ Yadd sarve pramu,^yante kama ye^sya hridi sthita/2 
atha martyo*mnto bhavaty atra brahma samaj’nute,’ 
and explains that the immortality which is here ascribed to 
the vidvan as soon as he abandons all desires can only 
mean the destruction — mentioned in the preceding pdda — 
of all the effects of good and evil works, while the ‘ reaching 
of Brahman ’ can only refer to the intuition of Brahman 
vouchsafed to the meditating devotee. 

Adhik. V (8-1 1) raises, according to Sankara, the ques- 
tion whether the subtle elements of which Scripture says 
that they are combined with the highest deity {teg&k 
parasyd;;? devatdydm) are completely merged in the latter 
or not. The answer is that a complete absorption of- the 
elements takes place only when final emancipation is 
reached ; thatj on the other hand, as long as the sawsdra 
state lasts, the elements, although somehow combined with 



Ixxx 


ved1nta-s6tras. 


Brahman, remain distinct so as to be able to form new 
bodies for the soul . 

According to R^manu^a the Sutras 8-ii do not con- 
stitute a new adhikarawa, but continue the discussion of 
the point mooted in 7. The immortality there spoken of 
does not imply the separation of the soul from the body, 
‘ because Scripture declares sawsira, i. e. embodiedness up 
to the reaching of Brahman ’ (tasya tavad eva k\x^in yivan 
na vimokshye atha sampatsye) (8). — That the soul after 
having departed from the gross body is not disconnected 
from the subtle elements, is also proved hereby, that the 
subtle body accompanies it, as is observed from authority ^ 
(9). — Hence the immortality referred to in the scriptural 
passage quoted is not effected by means of the total 
destruction of the body (10). 

Adhik. VI (13-14) is of special importance. — According 
to S'ahkara the Sutras now turn from the discussion of the 
departure of him who possesses the lower knowledge only to 
the consideration of what becomes of him who has reached 
the higher knowledge. So far it has been taught that in the 
case of relative immortality (ensuing on the apara vidyd) 
the subtle elements, together with the senses and so on, 
depart from the body of the dying devotee ; this implies at 
the same time that they do not depart from the body of 
the dying sage who knows himself to be one with Brahman. 
— Against this latter implied doctrine Sutra 1 3 is supposed 
to formulate an objection. ‘ If it be said that the departure 
of the pra/^as from the body of the dying sage is denied 
(viz. in Bn. Up. IV, 4, 5, na tasya pra;^^. utkramanti, of him 
the pri;«as do not pass out) ; we reply that in that passage 
the genitive “ tasya ” has the sense of the ablative “ tasmit,” 
so that the sense of the passage is, “ from him, i. e. from the 
^tva of the dying sage, the prd 72 as do not depart, but 
remain with it.” ’ — This objection .Sankara supposes to be 
disposed of in Sutra 13. ‘By some there is given a clear 
denial of the departure of the prdTzas in the case of the 

1 Upalabliyate hi devayS.nena panthS. gzkkhzXo vidushas tarn pratibrCiySt 
satyam bruyad iti iandramasS. sa;«vadava^’anena rarirasadbh&va/i, ata/i siikshma- 
janratn anavartate. 




INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxxi 


dying sage,’ viz. in the passage Br/. Up. Ill, 3 , ii, where 
Ya^;7avalkya instructs Artabhdga that, when this man dies, 
the pra/ms do not depart from it (asmat ; the context 
showing that asmat means ‘from it,’ viz. from the body, 
and not ‘ from him,’ viz. the ^iva). — The same view is, 
moreover, confirmed by Smrfti passages. 

According to Ramanuja the three Sutras forming San- 
kara’s sixth adhikara/m do not constitute a new adhikara/^a 
at all, and, moreover, have to be combined into two Sutras. 
The topic continuing to be discussed is the utkranti of the 
vidvan. If, Sutra I 3 says, the utkranti of the pra;.jas is not 
admitted, on the ground of the denial supposed to be 
contained in Brf. Up. IV, 4, 5 ; the reply is that the sense 
of the tasya there is ‘ s'arirat ’ (so that the passage means, 
‘from him, i.e. the ^iva, the pranas do not depart’); for 
this is clearly shown by the reading of some, viz, the 
Mddhyandinas, who, in their text of the passage, do not 
read ‘ tasya ’ but ‘ tasm^t’ — With reference to the instruc- 
tion given by Y^wavalkya to Artabhaga, it is to be 
remarked that nothing there shows the ‘ ayam purusha ’ to 
be the sage who knows Brahman. — And, finally, there are 
Smr/ti passages declaring that the sage also when dying 
departs from the body. 

Adhik. VII and VIII (15, 16) teach, according to Yahkara, 
that, on the death of him who possesses the higher know- 
ledge, his pra/^as, elements, &c. are merged in Brahman, so 
as to be no longer distinct from it in any way. 

According to Ramdnu^-a the two Sutras continue the 
teaching about the pra//as, bhutas, &c. of the vidvan in 
general, and declare that they are finally merged in Brah- 
man, not merely in the way of conjunction (sawyoga), but 
completely 

Adhik. IX { 17 }- — Yankara here returns to the owner of 
the apara vidya, while Ramanuja continues the description 
of the utkranti of his vidvan.— The ^tva of the dying man 


1 When the ^>iva has passed out of the body and ascends to the world of 
lirahman, it remains enveloped by the subtle body until it reaches the liver 
Vizard. There it divests itself of the subtle body, and the latter is merged in 
Brahman. 

[ 34 ] f 




Ixxxii 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


passes into the heart, and thence departs out of the body by 
means of the na^/is ; the vidvan by means of the nidi called 
sushum?4, the avidvan by means of some other na<^i. 

Adhik. X (i 8 , ig ). — The departing soul passes up to the 
sun by means of a ray of light which exists at night as well 
as during day. 

Adhik. XI (30, 21), — Also that vidvan who dies during 
the dakshiwayana reaches Brahman. 

Pada III. 

Adhik. I, II j III (1-3) reconcile the different accounts 
given in the Upanishads as to the stations of the way which 
leads the vidvan up to Brahman. 

Adhik. IV (4-6). — By the ‘ stations ’ we have, however, to* 
understand not only the subdivisions of the way but also 
the divine beings which lead the soul on. 

The remaining part of the pdda is by Sankara divided 
into two adhikarawas. Of these the former one (7-14) 
teaches that the Brahman to which the departed soul is led 
by the guardians of the path of the gods is not the highest 
Brahman, but the effected (karya) or qualified (sagu;^aj 
Brahman. This is the opinion propounded in Sutras 7-11 by 
Badari, and, finally, accepted by 5 ahkara in his commentary 
on Sutra 14. In Sutras 12-14 6^aimini defends the opposite 
view, according to which the soul of the vidvdn goes to the 
highest Brahman, not to the karyam brahma. But Cai- 
mini’s view, although set forth in the latter part of the 
adhikara/^a, is, according to S'ahkara, a mere purvapaksha, 
while Badari’ s opinion represents the siddhinta. — The 
latter of the two adhikara/^as (VI of the whole p^da ; 15, 16) 
records the opinion of Badaraya?^a on a collateral question, 
viz. whether, or not, all those who worship the effected Brah- 
man are led to it. The decision is that those only are 
guided to Brahman who have not worshipped it under a 
pratika form. 

According to Ramanuja, Sutras 7-16 form one adhikara;?a 
only, in which the views of Badari and of traimini represent 
two purvapakshas, wdiile Badarayawa’s opinion is adopted 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxxiii 


as the siddhanta. The question is whether the guardians 
of the path lead to Brahman only those who worship the 
effected Brahman, i.e. Hira;2yagarbha, or those who worship 
the highest Brahman, or those who worship the individual 
soul as free from Prakrzti, and having Brahman for its Self 
(ye pratyagatmana?;z prakrztiviyuktaz/z brahmatmakam upd- 
sate). — The first view is maintained by Badari in Sutra 7, 

‘ The guardians lead to Brahman those who worship the 
effected Brahman, because going is possible towards the 
latter only ; ’ for no movement can take place towards the 
highest and as such omnipresent Brahman. — The explana- 
tion of Sutra 9 is similar to that of sSankara ; but more clearly 
replies to the objection (that, if Hirafzyagarbha were meant 
in the passage, ‘ purusho^manava/z sa etan brahma garaa- 
yati,’ the text would read ' sa etan brahraazzam gamayati ’} 
that Hirazzyagarbha is called Brahman on account of his 
nearness to Brahman, i.e. on account of his prathama^atva. — 
The explanation of 10, ii is essentially the same as in wSan- 
kara; so also of 13-14. — The siddhanta view is established 
in Sfitra 13, ‘ It is the opinion of Bddardyazza that it, i.e. the 
ga«a of the guardians, leads to Brahman those who do not 
take their stand on what is pratika, i.e. those who worship 
the highest Brahman, and those who meditate on the indi- 
vidual Self as dissociated from prakr/ti, and having Brahman 
for its Self, but not those who worship Brahman under 
pratikas. For both views — that of Caimini as well as that 
of Bddari are faulty.’ The karya view contradicts such 
passages as ‘ asma,^ /^/zarirat samutthaya paraz/z ^yotir upa- 
sampadya,’ &c. ; the para view, such passages as that in the 
pa%^%ni-vidyd, which declares that ya itthazzz vidu/z, i.e. 
those who know the pazz/^igni-vidya, are also led up to 
Brahman. 


Pada IV. 

Adhik. I (1-3) returns, according to Aankara, to the 
owner of the para vidya, and teaches that, when on his 
death his soul obtains final release, it does not acquire any 
new characteristics, but merely manifests itself in its true 
nature.— The explanation given by Ramanuja is essentially 

f 3 




Ixxxiv 


VEDANTA“S{jTRAS. 


the same, but of course refers to that vidvan whose going to 
Brahman had been described in the preceding pada. 

Adhik, II (4) determines that the relation in which the 
released soul stands to Brahman is that of avibhaga, non- 
separation. This, on vSahkara’s view, means absolute non- 
separation, identity. — According to Rimanu^a the question 
to be considered is whether the released soul views itself as 
separate (pnthagbhuta) from Brahman, or as non-separate 
because being a mode of Brahman. The former view is 
favoured by those .Sruti and Smrzti passages which speak 
of the soul as being with, or equal to, Brahman ; the latter 
by such passages as tat tvam asi and the like 

Adhik. Ill (5~7) discusses the characteristics of the re- 
leased soul (i.e. of the truly released soul, according to 
vS'ahkara). According to 6^aimini the released soul, when 
manifesting itself in its true nature, possesses all those quali- 
ties which in Kh. Up. VIII, 7, 1 and other places are ascribed 
to Brahman, such as apahatap^pmatva, satyasaz/zkalpatva, 
&c., aBvarya. — According to AuAilomi the only character- 
istic of the released soul is /^aitanya. — According to Badara- 
yana the two views can be combined (6'ahkara remarking 
that satyasaz/zkalpatva, &c. are ascribed to the released soul 
vyavaharapekshaya). 

Adhik. IV (11-9) returns, according to vS'ahkara, to the 
apara vidya, and discusses the question whether the soul of 


^ Kim aya//^ para//.; J^'yolir upasampaima/i saivabaiidhaviiiiimukta.^ I)iatya- 
gatma svatmanaw paramatmana/^ prAhagbhutam aniibhavati uta tatprakarataya 
tadavibliaktam iti vijaye so j: jnute sarvan kaman saha brahma^a vipajZ’ita 
pajya/i pa^yate lakmavamaw karlaram ua/w purushaw brahmayonivi tada 
vidvan piu^yapape vidhuya nira%ana/i paiamaw samyam upaiti idaw gnkmm 
upajritya mama sadharrayam %ata/i sarve jc pi nopa^ayante pralayena vyathanti 
/^etyadijrutismr/tibhyo muktasya parewa sahityasamyasadliarmyavagamat 
prAhagbliktam anubhavatiti piapte ii.^yate. Avibliageneti. Parasmad brahma- 
na.k svalmanam avibhagenSnubhavali innkta/i. Kuta/i. Dnshfelvat. Para?// 
biahmopasampadya nivwltavidyaUrodhanasya yalhatathyena svatmano dnsliZa- 
Ivat. Svatmana/i svarupa/« hi tat tvam asy ayam fttma brahma aitadatniyam 
ida;« sarva/« sarvaw khalv ida?« brahmetyadisamaiiadhikarawyaniidejai/i ya 
atmani tishif/^an, atmaiio j: ntaro yam atmS. na veda yasyatma saximm ya 
atmanam antaro yamayati atmautaryamy amr/ta/; anta/i pravishZa// ^asta 
^auan3.m ityadibhir paramalmatmakaw laZ'Mariiatayd tatprakaiabhutam iti 
piatijjaditam avasthitei iti karakmsnety atrS.to s vibliagciiaha/« brahmasmity 
evanubhavati. 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxxv 


the pious effects its desires by its mere determination, or 
uses some other means. The former alternative is ac- 
cepted. — According to Ramanuja the adhikara;?a simply 
continues the consideration of the state of the released, 
begun in the preceding adhikara?2a. Of the released soul it 
is said in Kh. Up. VIII, la, 3 that after it has manifested 
itself in its true nature it moves about playing and rejoicing 
with women, carriages, and so on. The question then arises 
whether it effects all this by its mere sawkalpa (it having 
been shown in the preceding adhikaraz/a that the released 
soul is, like the Lord, satyasa^wkalpa), or not. The answer 
is in favour of the former altei native, on account of the 
explicit declaration made in KJi. Up. VIII, e, ‘ By his mere 
will the fathers come to receive him.’ 

Adhik. V (10-T4) decides that the released are embodied 
or disembodied according to their wish and will. 

Adhik. VI (ii, 12) explains how the soul of the released 
can animate several bodies at the same time. — Sutra 12 gives, 
according to S’ahkara,the additional explanation that those 
pa.ssages which declare the absence of all specific cognition 
on the part of the released soul do not refer to the partly 
released soul of the devotee, but either to the soul in the 
state of deep sleep (svdpyaya = sushupti), or to the fully 
released soul of the sage (sampatti = kaivalya). — Ramanuja 
explains that the passages speaking of absence of conscious- 
ness refer either to the state of deep sleep, or to the time 
of dying (sampatti = rnara;2am according to ‘van manasi 
sampadyate,’ Stc.). 

Adhik. VII (17-21). — The released ^ivas participate in all 
the perfections and powers of the Lord, with the exception 
of the power of creating and sustaining the world. They 
do not return to new forms of embodied existence. 

After having, in this way, rendered ourselves acquainted 
with the contents of the Brahma-sutras according to the 
views of ^aiikara as well as Ramanuja, we have now 
to consider the question which of the two modes of 
interpretation represents— or at any rate more closely 
approximates to— the true meaning of the Sutras. That 



Ixxxvi 


VEDANTA- StjTRAS, 


few of the SCitras are intelligible if taken by themselves, we 
have already remarked above; but this does not exclude 
the possibility of our deciding with a fair degree of cer- 
tainty which of the two intei'pretations proposed agrees 
better with the text, at least in a certain number of cases. 

We have to note in the first place that, in spite of very 
numerous discrepancies, — of which only the more important 
ones have been singled out in the conspectus of contents, — 
the two commentators are at one as to the general drift of 
the Sutras and the arrangement of topics. As a rule, the 
adhikarawas discuss one or several Vedic passage's bearing 
upon a certain point of the system, and in the vast majority 
of cases the two commentators agree as to which are the 
special texts referred to. And, moreover, in a very large 
number of cases the agreement extends to the interpreta- 
tion to be put on those passages and on the Sutras. This 
far-reaching agreement certainly tends to inspire us with a 
certain confidence as to the existence of an old tradition 
concerning the meaning of the Sutras on which the bulk of 
the interpretations of S'ankara as well as of Riminu^a are 
based. 

But at the same time we have seen that, in a not incon- 
siderable number of cases, the interpretations of .Sankara 
and Ramanuja diverge more or less widely, and that 
the Sutras affected thereby are, most of them, especially 
important because bearing on fundamental points of the 
Vedinta system. The question then remains which of the 
two interpretations is entitled to preference. 

Regarding a small number of Sutras I have already (in 
the conspectus of contents) given it as my opinion that 
Ramanuja’s explanation appears to be more worthy of 
consideration. We meet, in the first place, with a number 
of cases in which the two commentators agree as to the 
literal meaning of a Sutra, but where S'ahkara sees him- 
self reduced to the necessity of supplementing his inter- 
pretation by certain additions and reservations of his own 
for which the text gives no occasion, while R^manuja is 
able to take the Sutra as it stands. To exemplify this 
remark, I again direct attention to all those Sutras which in 



liNTRODUCTION. 


Ixxxvii 


clear terms represent the individual soul as something dif- 
ferent from the highest soul, and concerning which Sankara 
is each time obliged to have recourse to the plea of the 
Sutra referring, not to what is true in the strict sense of 
the word, but only to what is conventionally looked upon as 
true. It is, I admit, not altogether impossible that S'aii- 
kara’s interpretation should represent the real meaning of 
the Sutras ; that the latter, indeed, to use the terms em- 
ployed by Dr. Deussen, should for the nonce set forth an 
exoteric doctrine adapted to the common notions of man- 
kind, which, however, can be rightly understood by him 
only to whose mind the esoteric doctrine is all the while 
present. This is not impossible, I say ; but it is a point 
which requires convincing proofs before it can be allowed. — 
We have had, in the second place, to note a certain number 
of adhikara/ms and Sfitras concerning whose interpretation 
S'ahkara and Ramanu^n disagree altogether; and we have 
seen that not unfrequently the explanations given by the 
latter commentator appear to be preferable because falling 
in more easily with the words of the text. The most 
striking instance of this is afforded by the 13th adhikara//a 
of II, 3, which treats of the size of the ^Iva, and where 
Rdmanu^a’s explanation seems to be decidedly superior to 
6'ahkara’s, both if we look to the arrangement of the whole 
adhikarawa and to the wording of the single Sutras. The 
adhikara;-?a is, moreover, a specially important one, be- 
cause the nature of the view held as to the size of the indi- 
vidual soul goes far to settle the question what kind of 
Veddnta is embodied in Badardya;/a’s work. 

But it will be requisite not only to dwell on the interpre- 
tations of a few detached Sutras, but to make the attempt 
at least of forming some opinion as to the relation of the 
Vedanta-sutras as a whole to the chief distinguishing 
doctrines of S'ahkara as well as Ramdnq^a. Such an 
attempt may possibly lead to very slender positive results ; 
but in the present state of the enquiry even a merely 
negative result, viz. the conclusion that the Sutras do not 
teach particular doctrines found in them by certain com- 
mentators, will not be without its value. 



Ixxxviii 


VEDANTA-SLITRAP. 


The first question we wish to consider in some detail is 
whether the Sutras in any way favour S’ankara’s doctrine 
that we have to distinguish a twofold knowledge of Brah- 
man, a higher knowledge which leads to the immediate 
absorption, on death, of the individual soul in Brahman, 
and a lower knowledge which raises its owner merely to an 
exalted form of individual existence. The adhyaya first to 
be considered in this connexion is the fourth one. According 
to vSankara the three latter pad as of that adhyaya are 
chiefly engaged in describing the fate of him who dies in 
the possession of the lower knowledge, while two sections 
(IV, 2, 12-14; IV, 4, 1-7) tell us what happens to him 
who, before his death, had risen to the knowledge of 
the highest Brahman. According to R^manufa, on the 
other hand, the three padas, referring throughout to one 
subject only, give an uninterrupted account of the succes- 
sive steps by which the soul of him who knows the Lord 
through the Upanishads passes, at the time of death, out of 
the gross body which it had tenanted, ascends to the world 
of Brahman, and lives there for ever without returning into 
the sa:;;2sira. 

On an a priori view of the matter it certainly appears 
somewhat strange that the concluding section of the Sutras 
should be almost entirely taken up with describing the fate 
of him who has after all acquired an altogether inferior 
knowledge only, and has remained shut out from the true 
sanctuary of Vedantic knowledge, while the fate of the fully 
initiated is disposed of in a few occasional Sutras. It is, I 
think, not too much to say that no unbiassed student of 
the Sfitras would — before having allowed himself to be 
influenced by .Sankara’s interpretations — imagine for a 
moment that the solemn words, ‘ From thence is no return, 
from thence is no return,’ with which the Sutras conclude, 
are meant to describe, not the lasting condition of him who 
has reached final release, the highest aim of man, but 
merely a stage on the way of that soul which is engaged in 
the slow progress of gradual release, a stage which is 
indeed greatly superior to any earthly form of existence, 
but yet itself belongs to the essentially fictitious samsara, 



INTRODUCTION. 


Ixxxix 


and as such remains infinitely below the bliss of true miikti. 
And this a priori impression — which, although no doubt 
significant, could hardly be appealed to as decisive—is 
confirmed by a detailed consideration of the two sets of 
Sutras which .Sankara connects with the knowledge of the 
higher Brahman. How these Sutras are interpreted by 
S'ankara and Rimanu^a has been stated above in the con- 
spectus of contents ; the points which render the interpre- 
tation given by Raminu^a more probable are as follows. 
With regard to IV, 2, J2-14, we have to note, in the first 
place, the circumstance — relevant although not decisive in 
itself — that Sutra 12 does not contain any indication of a 
new topic being introduced. In the second place, it can 
hardly be doubted that the text of Sutra 13, ‘spash/o hy 
ekesham/ is more appropriately understood, with Ramd- 
nu^a, as furnishing a I'eason for the opinion advanced in 
the preceding Sutra, than — with 5 ‘ahkara — as embodying 
the refutation of a previous statement (in which latter case 
we should exjDect not ‘hi’ but ‘tu’). And, in the third 
place, the ‘eke,’ i.e. ‘some,’ referred to in Sutra 13 would, 
on Aahkara’s interpretation, denote the very same persons 
to whom the preceding Sutra had referred, viz. the 
followers of the K§L?^va.sk'kha (the two Vedic passages 
referred to in 12 and 13 being Brz. Up. IV, 4, 5, and III, 2, 
II, according to the Kdzzva recension); while it is the 
standing practice of the Sutras to inti'oduce, by means of the 
designation ‘ eke,’ members of Vedic .yakhas, teachers, Src. 
other than those alluded to in the preceding Sutras. With 
this practice Ramanu^’s interpretation, on the other hand, 
fully agrees ; for, according to him, the ‘ eke ’ are the Ma- 
dhyandinas, whose reading in Brz. Up. IV, 4, 5, viz. ‘ tasmat,’ 
dearly indicates that the ‘tasya’ in the corresponding 
passage of the Kazzvas denotes the jarira, i.e. the ^iva. 
I think it is not saying too much that Aahkara’s explana- 
tion, according to which the ‘‘eke’ would denote the very 
same Kdzzvas to whom the preceding Sutra had referred — 
so that the Kizzvas would be distinguished from themselves 
as it were — is altogether impossible. 

The result of this closer consideration of the first set of 



] XXXviii VEDANTA-Sl* TRAS. 


The first question we wish to consider in some detail is 
whether the Sutras in any way favour S'aiikara’s doctrine 
that we have to distinguish a twofold knowledge of Brah- 
man, a higher knowledge which leads to the immediate 
absorption, on death, of the individual soul in Brahman, 
and a lower knowledge which raises its owner merely to an 
exalted form of individual existence. The adhyaya first to 
be considered in this connexion is the fourth one. According 
to 6'ankara the three latter padas of that adhyaya are 
chiefly engaged in describing the fate of him who dies in 
the possession of the lower knowledge, while two sections 
(IV, 2 , 12-14; IV, 4, 1-7) tell us what happens to him 
who, before his death, had risen to the knowledge of 
the highest Brahman, According to Bimanqga, on the 
other hand, the three padas, referring throughout to one 
subject only, give an uninterrupted account of the succes- 
sive steps by which the soul of him who knows the Lord 
through the Upanishads passes, at the time of death, out of 
the gross body which it had tenanted, ascends to the world 
of Brahman, and lives there for ever without returning into 
the sai'^sara. 

On an a priori view of the matter it certainly appears 
somewhat strange that the concluding section of the Sutras 
should be almost entirely taken up with describing the fate 
of him who has after all acquired an altogether inferior 
knowledge only, and has remained shut out from the true 
sanctuary of Vedantic knowledge, while the fate of the fully 
initiated is disposed of in a few occasional Stitras. It is, I 
think, not too much to say that no unbiassed student of 
the Sfitras would — before having allowed himself to be 
influenced by 6’ankara’s interpretations — imagine for a 
moment that the solemn words, ‘ From thence is no return, 
from thence is no return,’ with which the Sutras conclude, 
are meant to describe, not the lasting condition of him who 
has reached final release, the highest aim of man, but 
merely a stage on the way of that soul which is engaged in 
the slow progress of gradual release, a stage which is 
indeed greatly superior to any earthly form of existence, 
but yet itself belongs to the essentially fictitious sa?;;sara, 



TNTRODUCTIOX. 


Ixxxix 


and as such remains infinitel}? below the bliss of true raukti. 
And this a priori impression — which, although no doubt 
significant, could hardly be appealed to as decisive — is 
confirmed by a detailed consideration of the two sets of 
Sutras which S'ankara connects with the knowledge of the 
higher Brahman. How these Sutras are interpreted by 
vSaiikara and Ramanuja has been stated above in the con- 
spectus of contents ; the points which render the interpre- 
tation given by R^mfi,nu^a more probable are as follows. 
With regard to IV, 2, 13-14, we have to note, in the first 
place, the circumstance — relevant although not decisive in 
itself — that Sutra T 3 does not contain any indication of a 
new topic being introduced. In the second place, it can 
hardly be doubted that the text of Sutra 13, 'spash/o hy 
ekesham/ is more appropriately understood, with Rama- 
nuja, as furnishing a reason for the opinion advanced in 
the preceding Sutra, than — with S'ankara — as embodying 
the refutation of a previous statement (in which latter case 
we should expect not 'hi’ but Hu’). And, in the third 
place, the 'eke,’ i.e. 'some,’ referred to in Sutra 13 would, 
on S'ankara’s interpretation, denote the very same persons 
to whom the preceding Sutra had referred, viz. the 
followers of the Ki^^va-jikha (the two Vcdic passages 
referred to in 12 and 13 being Bri. Up. IV, 4, 5, and III, 3, 
II, according to the Ka;zva recension); while it is the 
standing practice of the Sutras to introduce, by means of the 
designation ' eke,’ members of Vedic jakhas, teachers, &c. 
other than those alluded to in the preceding Sutras. With 
this practice Raminuja’s interpretation, on the other hand, 
fully agrees ; for, according to him, the ‘ eke ’ are the Ma- 
dhyandinas, whose reading in Bri. Up. IV, 4, 5, viz. ‘ tasmat,’ 
clearly indicates that the ' tasya ’ in the corresponding 
passage of the Kawas denotes the ^arira, i.e. the jiva. 
I think it is not saying too much that Vankara’s explana- 
tion, according to which the ‘’eke’ would denote the very 
same Ka^^vas to whom the preceding Sutra had referred — 
so that the Kd;2vas would be distinguished from themselves 
as it were — is altogether impossible. 

The result of this closer consideration of the first set of 



xc 


VRDANTA-SUTRAS. 


Sutras, alleged by ^Sankara to concern the owner of the 
higher knowledge of Brahman, entitles us to view with some 
distrust 5 ahkara’s assertion that another set also — IV, 4, 
1-7 — has to be detached from the general topic of the 
fourth adhyaya, and to be understood as depicting the 
condition of those who have obtained final absolute release. 
And the Sutras themselves do not tend to weaken this 
preliminary want of confidence. In the first place their 
wording also gives no indication whatever of their having 
to be separated from what precedes as well as what follows. 
And, in the second place, the last Sutra of the set (7) 
obliges S'ankara to ascribe to his truly released souls 
qualities which clearly cannot belong to them; so that 
he finally is obliged to make the extraordinary state- 
ment that those qualities belong to them ‘ vyavah^rdpe- 
kshayfi/ while yet the purport of the whole adhikara/?a is 
said to be the description of the truly released soul for 
which no vyavahara exists! Very truly S'ankara’s com- 
mentator here remarks, ‘atra keMn muhyanti akha7/<^a- 
Z’intndtra^/zanan muktasydg-zldnabh^vat kuta fi^;Ifinika- 
dharmayoga/q’ and the way in which thereupon he himself 
attempts to get over the difficulty certainly does not 
improve matters. 

In connexion with the two passages discussed, we meet 
in the fourth adhyaya with another passage, which indeed 
has no direct bearing on the distinction of apar^ and para 
vidya, but may yet be shortly referred to in this place as 
another and altogether undoubted instance of Aankara’s 
interpretations not always agreeing with the text of the 
Sutras. The Sutras 7-16 of the third pida state the 
opinions of three different teachers on the question to which 
Brahman the soul of the vidvdn repairs on death, or — 
according to RamAnu^a — the worshippers of which Brah- 
man repair to (the highest) Brahman. Ramanuja treats 
the views of Badari and Caimini as two purvapakshas, and 
the opinion of Badaraya/za — which is stated last — as the 
siddhAnta. Taiikara, on the other hand, detaching the Sutras 
in which Badaraya^^a’s view is set forth from the preceding 
part of the adhikara/u (a proceeding which, although not 



INTRODUCTION. 


xci 


plausible, yet cannot be said to be altogether illegiti- 
mate), maintains that Badari’s view, which is expounded 
first, represents the siddhanta, while (Jaimini’s view, set 
forth subsequently, is to be considered a mere purva- 
paksha. This, of course, is altogether inadmissible, it 
being the invariable practice of the Ved^nta-sutras as 
well as the Pfirva Mima»2sa-siatras to conclude the dis- 
cussion of contested points with the statement of that view 
which is to be accepted as the authoritative one. This is 
so patent that .Sankara feels himself called upon to defend 
his deviation from the general rule (Commentary on IV, 4, 
] 3), without, however, bringing forward any arguments but 
such as are valid only if .Sankara’s system itself is already 
accepted. 

The previous considerations leave us, I am inclined to 
think, no choice but to side with Ramanuja as to the 
general subject-matter of the fourth adhyaya of the Sutras. 
We need not accept him as our guide in all particular 
interpretations, but we must acknowledge with him that 
the Sfitras of the fourth adhydya describe the ultimate' fate 
of one and the same vidvdn, and do not afford any basis 
for the distinction of a higher and lower knowledge of 
Brahman in Sankara’s sense. 

If we have not to discriminate between a lower and a 
higher knowledge of Brahman, it follows that the dis- 
tinction of a lower and a higher Brahman is likewise not 
valid. But this is not a point to be decided at once on the 
negative evidence of the fourth adhyaya, but regarding 
which the entire body of the Vedanta-siitras has to be 
consulted. And intimately connected with this investiga- 
tion — in fact, one with it from a certain point of view — is 
the question whether the Sutras afford any evidence of 
their author having held the doctrine of Maya, the principle 
of illusion, by the association with which the highest 
Brahman, in itself transcending all qualities, appears as the 
lower Brahman or l^vara. That Ramdnu^m denies the 
distinction of the two Brahmans and the doctrine of Mayd 
we have seen above ; we .shall, however, in the subsequent 
investigation, pay less attention to his views and inter- 



XCii VEDANTA-P^TRAS. 

pretalions than to the indications furnished by the Sutras 
themselves. 

Placing myself at the point of view of a ^Sankara, I am 
startled at the outset by the second Sutra of the first 
adhyaya, which undertakes to give a definition of Brahman. 
‘ Brahman is that whence the origination and so on (i.e. the 
siistentation and reabsorption) of this world proceed.’ What, 
we must ask, is this Sfitra meant to define? — That Brah- 
man, we are inclined to answer, whose cognition the first 
Sutra declares to constitute the task of the entire Vedanta ; 
that Brahman whose cognition is the only road to final 
release ; that Brahman in fact which S’ankara calls the 
highest. — But, here v/e must object to ourselves, the highest 
Brahman is not properly defined as that from which the 
world originates. In later Vedantic writings, whose authors 
Avere clearly conscious of the distinction of the higher 
absolute Brahman and the lower Brahman related to Mflyi 
or the world, we meet with definitions of Brahman of an 
altogether different type. I need only remind the reader 
of the current definition of Brahman as sa/^’-/^id-^nanda, or, 
to mention one individual instance, refer to the introductory 
^lokas of the Pa/l/^ada^t dilating on the sa^^vid svayam- 
prabha, the self-luminous principle of thought which in all 
time, past or future, neither starts into being nor perishes 
(P. D. I, 7 ). ‘ That from which the world proceeds’ can by 

a 5aiikara be accepted only as a definition of Wara, of 
Brahman which by its association with Maya is enabled to 
project the false appearance of this world, and it certainly 
is as improbable that the Sutras should open with a 
definition of that inferior principle, from whose cognition 
there can accrue no permanent benefit, as, according to a 
remark made above, it is unlikely that they should con- 
clude with a description of the state of those who know 
the lower Brahman only, and thus are debarred from 
obtaining true release. As soon, on the other hand, as we 
discard the idea of a twofold Brahman and conceive Brah- 
man as one only, as the all-enfolding being which some- 
times emits the world from its own substance and sometimes 
again retracts it into itself, ever remaining one in all its 



INTRODUCTION. 


XClll 


various manifestations — a conception which need not by 
any means be modelled in all its details on the views of the 
Ramanujas — the definition of Brahman given in the second 
Sutra becomes altogether unobjectionable. 

We next enquire whether the impression left on the 
mind by the manner in which Badaraya;2a defines Brah- 
man, viz. that he does not distjnguish between an absolute 
Brahman and a Brahman associated with Mayd, is con- 
firmed or weakened by any other parts of his work. The 
Sutras being throughout far from direct in their enun- 
ciations, we shall have to look less to particular terms 
and turns of expression than to general lines of reasoning. 
What in this connexion seems specially worthy of being 
taken into account, is the style of argumentation employed 
by the Sutrakdra against the Sdhkhya doctrine, which 
maintains that the world has originated, not from an 
intelligent being, but from the non-intelligent pradhana. 
The 'most important Sutras relative to this point are to be 
met with in the first pada of the second adhyaya. Those 
Sutras are indeed almost unintelligible if taken by them- 
selves, but the unanimity of the commentators as to their 
meaning enables us to use them as steps in our investiga- 
tion. The sixth Sutra of the pada mentioned replies to the 
Sdnkhya objection that the non-intelligent world cannot 
spring from an intelligent principle, by the remark that ‘ it 
is thus seen,’ i. e. it is a matter of common observation that 
non-intelligent things are produced from beings endowed 
with intelligence ; hair and nails, for instance, springing from 
animals, and certain insects from dung. — Now, an argu- 
mentation of this kind is altogether out of place from the 
point of view of the true Nahkara, According to the latter 
the non-intelligent wosld does not spring from Brahman in 
so far as the latter is intelligence, but in so far as it is 
associated with Mdyd. Maya is the upadana of the material 
world, and Maya itself is of a non-intelligent nature, owing 
to which it is by so many Veddntic writers identified with 
the praknti of the Sdiikhyas. Similarly the illustrative 
instances, adduced under Sutra 9 for the purpose of showing 
that effects when being reabsorbed into their causal sub- 



XCIV 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


stances do not impart to the latter their own qualities, and 
that hence the material world also, when being refunded 
into Brahman, does not impart to it its own imperfections, 
are singularly inappropriate if viewed in connexion with 
the doctrine of Maya, according to which the material 
world is no more in Brahman at the time of a pralaya than 
during the period of its subsistence. According to .Sankara 
the world is not merged in Brahman, but the special forms 
into which the upadana of the world, i.e. Mayd, had 
modified itself are merged in non-distinct Maya, whose 
relation to Brahman is not changed thereby. — The illus- 
tration, again, given in Sutra 2,4 of the mode in which Brah- 
man, by means of its inherent power, transforms itself into 
the world without employing any extraneous instruments 
of action, ‘ kshiravad dhi,’ ‘ as milk (of its own accord turns 
into curds),' would be strangely chosen indeed if meant to 
bring nearer to our understanding the mode in which 
Brahman projects the illusive appearance of the world; 
and also the analogous instance given in the Sutra next 
following, ‘ as Gods and the like (create palaces, chariots, 
&c. by the mere power of their will) ' — which refers to the 
real creation of real things — would hardly be in its place if 
meant to illustrate a theory which considers unreality to be 
the true character of the woidd. The mere cumulation of 
the two essentially heterogeneous illustrative instances 
(kshiravad dhi ; devadivat), moreover, seems to show that 
the writer who had recourse to them held no very definite 
theory as to the particular mode in which the world 
springs from Brahman, but was merely concerned to render 
plausible in some way or other that an intelligent being 
can give rise to what is non-intelHgent without having 
recourse to any extraneous m.eans 

That the Maya doctrine was not present to the mind of 
the Sutrak^ra, further appears from the latter part of the 
fourth pada of the first adhyaya, where it is shown that 
Brahman is not only the operative but also the material 
cause of the world. If anywhere, there would have been 

^ Aankaia’s favourite illustrative instance of the magician producing illusive 
sights is — significantly enough — not known to the Sutras. 





INTRODUCTION. 


XCV 


the place to indicate, had such been the author’s view, that 
Brahman is the material cause of the world through Maya 
only, and that the world is unreal ; but the Sutras do not 
contain a single word to that effect. Sutra ad, on the othei 
hand, exhibits the significant term ‘ pariwarnat ; ’ Brahman 
produces the world by means of a modification of itself. It 
is well known that later on, when the terminology of the 
Vedanta became definitely settled, the term ‘ pari?/dmavada 
was used to denote that very theory to which the followers 
of S'ankara are most violently opposed, viz. the doctrine 
according to which the world is not a mere vivaita, i.e. an 
illusory manifestation of Brahman, but the effect of Brah- 
man undergoing a real change, may that change be con- 
ceived to take place in the way taught by Raminug^a or in 
some other manner. — With regard to the last-quoted Sutra, 
as well as to those touched upon above, the commentators 
indeed maintain that whatever terms and modes of ex- 
pression are apparently opposed to the vivartavada are 
in reality reconcilable with it; to Sutra ad, for instance, 
Govindananda remarks that the term ‘pari;/ama’ only 
denotes- an effect in general (karyamatra), without implying 
that the effect is real. But in cases of this nature we are 
fully entitled to use our own judgment, even if we were not 
compelled to do so by the fact that other commentators, 
such as Raminu^a, are satisfied to take ‘pari;zdma’ and 
similar terms in their generally received sense. 

A further section treating of the nature of Brahman is 
met with in III, a, ii ff. It is, according to Aankara’s view, 
of special importance, as it is alleged to set forth that Brah- 
man is in itself destitute of all qualities, and is affected with 
qualities only through its limiting adjuncts fupidhis), the 
offspring of Mdya. I have above (in the conspectus of 
contents) given a somewhat detailed abstract of the whole 
section as interpreted by Sankara on the one hand, and 
Ramanuja on the other hand, from which it appears that 
the latter’s opinion as to the purport of the group of Sutras 
widely diverges from that of 6'ankara. The wording of 
the Sutras is so eminently concise and vague that I find it 
impossible to decide which of the two commentators — if 



XCVl 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


indeed either — is to be accepted as a trustworthy guide ; 
regarding the sense of some Sutras S'ahkara s explanation 
seems to deserve preference, in the case of others Rama- 
nug^a seems to keep closer to the text. I decidedly 
prefer, for instance, Ramanugm’s interpretation of Sutra 22, 
as far as the sense of the entire Sutra is concerned, and 
more especially with regard to the term ‘ prakWtaitavat- 
tvam,’ whose proper force is brought out by Ramanug-a’s 
explanation only. So much is certain that none of the 
Sutras decidedly favours the interpretation proposed by 
Sankara. Whichever commentator we follow, we greatly 
miss coherence and strictness ot reasoning, and it is 
thus by no means improbable that the section is one of 
those — perhaps not few in number — in which both inter- 
preters had less regard to the literal sense of the words and 
to tradition than to their desire of forcing Badaraya;;ia’s 
Sutras to bear testimony to the truth of their own philo- 
sophic theories. 

With special reference to the Mdy^ doctrine one impor- 
tant Sutra has yet to be considered, the only one in which 
the term 'miy 4 ’ itself occurs, viz. III, 2, 3. According 
to S'ahkara the Sutra signifies that the environments of 
the dreaming soul are not real but mere Mayd, i.e. unsub- 
stantial illusion, because they do not fully manifest the 
character of real objects. Ramanu^'a (as we have seen in 
the conspectus) gives a different explanation of the term 
‘ maya,’ but in judging of S’ankara’s views we may for the 
time accept .Sankara’s own interpretation. Now, from the 
latter it clearly follows that if the objects seen in dreams 
are to be called Maya, i.e. illusion, because not evincing 
the characteristics of reality, the objective world surround- 
ing the waking soul must not be called M^yd. But that 
the world perceived by waking men is Mdyd, even in a 
higher sense than the world presented to the dreaming con- 
sciousness, is an undoubted tenet of the ^diikara Veddnta ; 
and the Sutra therefore proves either that Bddardya/^a did 
not hold the doctrine of the illusory character of the world, 
or else that, if after all he did hold that doctrine, he used 
the term ^ maya ’ in a sense altogether different from that 



INTRODUCTION. 


XCVll 


in which 5 ahkara employs it.— If, on the other hand, we, 
with Ramiinii^a, understand the word * mdyd ’ to denote 
a wonderful thing, the Sfitra of course has no bearing what- 
ever on the doctrine of Mdyd in its later technical sense. 

We now turn to the question as to the relation of the 
individual soul to Brahman. Do the Shtras indicate any- 
where that their author held 6'ankara’s doctrine, according 
to which the ^iva is in reality identical with Brahman, and 
separated from it, as it were, only by a false surmise due to 
avidya, or do they rather favour the view that the souls, 
although they have sprung from Brahman, and constitute 
elements of its nature, yet enjoy a kind of individual exist- 
ence apart from it ? This question is in fact only another 
aspect of the Mkyk question, but yet requires a short 
separate treatment. 

In the conspectus I have given it as my opinion that the 
Sutras in which the size of the individual soul is discussed 
can hardly be understood in S’ankara’s sense, and rather 
seem to favour the opinion, held among others by Ramd- 
nu^a, that the soul is of minute size. We have further seen 
that Sutra i8 of the third pada of the second adhyaya, which 
describes the soul as ^ gnd.’ is more appropriately under- 
stood in the sense assigned to it by Rdmanu^a ; and, again, 
that the Sutras which treat of the soul’ being an agent, can 
be reconciled with vS’ahkara’s views only if supplemented 
in a way which their text does not appear to authorise. — 
We next have the important Sutra II, 3, 43 in which the 
soul is distinctly said to be a part (a^j-a) of Brahman, and 
which, as we have already noticed, can be made to fall in 
with .Sankara’s views only if z.ins2i is explained, altogether 
arbitrarily, by ‘ sunsa. iva/ while Ramanu^ is able to take the 
Sutra as it stands. — We also have already referred to Sfitra 
50, ‘ ibhdsa eva /^a,’ which Sankara interprets as setting forth 
the so-called pratibimbavada according to which the indi- 
vidual Self is merely a reflection of the highest Self. But 
almost every Sutra — and Sutra 50 forms no exception — being 
so obscurely expressed, that viewed by itself it admits of 
various, often totally opposed, interpretations, the only safe 
method is to keep in view, in the case of each ambiguous 
[ 34 ] g 




xcvm 


VEDANTA-sdTRAS. 


aphorism, the general drift and spirit of the whole work, 
and that, as we have seen hitherto, is by no means favour- 
able to the pratibimba doctrine. How indeed could Sutra 50, 
if setting forth that latter doctrine, be reconciled with Sutra 
43, which says distinctly that the soul is a part of Brahman ? 
For that 43 contains, as S'ahkara and his commentators 
aver, a statement of the avUi^Medav^da, can itself be ac- 
cepted only if we interpret d.ms2. by z-inss. iva, and to do so 
there is really no valid reason whatever. I confess that 
Rimanu^a’s interpretation of the Sutra (which however is 
accepted by several other commentators also) does not 
appear to me particularly convincing; and the Shtras 
unfortunately offer us no other passages on the ground of 
which we might settle the meaning to be ascribed to the 
term ^bhisa, which may mean ‘ reflection,’ but may mean 
hetvibhdsa, i. e. fallacious argument, as well. But as things 
stand, this one Sfltra cannot, at any rate, be appealed to 
as proving that the pratibimbavdda which, in its turn, pre- 
supposes the miydvl.da, is the teaching of the Sutras. 

To the conclusion that the Sutrak^ra did not hold the 
doctrine of the absolute identity of the highest and the 
individual soul in the sense of S'ahkara, we are further led 
by some other indications to be met with here and there 
in the Shtras. In the conspectus of contents we have had 
occasion to direct attention to the important Sutra II, i, a2, 
which distinctly enunciates that the Lord is adhika, i. e. 
additional to, or different from, the individual soul, since 
Scripture declares the two to be different. Analogously 
I, a, ao lays stress on the fact that the j'^rira is not the 
antarydmin, because the Midhyandinas, as well as the 
K^«vas, speak of him in their texts as different (bhedena 
enam adliiyate), and in aa the i-drira and the pradhdna are 
referred to as the two ‘ others ’ (itaran) of whom the text 
predicates distinctive attributes separating them from the 
highest Lord. The word ‘ itara ’ (the other one) appears 
in several other passages (I, i, 16 ; I, 3, 16; II, i, ai) as a 
kind of technical term denoting the individual soul in con- 
tradistinction from the Lord. The 5 dhkaras indeed main- 
tain that all those passages refer to an unreal distinction 



INTRODUCTION. 


XCIX 


due to avidya. But this is just what we should like to see 
proved, and the proof offered in no case amounts to more 
than a reference to the system which demands that the 
Sutras should be thus understood. If we accept the inter- 
pretations of the school of 5ankara, it remains altogether un- 
intelligible why the Sutrakdra should never hint even at what 
5ahkara is anxious again and again to point out at length, 
viz. that the greater part of the work contains a kind of 
exoteric doctrine only, ever tending to mislead the student 
who does not keep in view what its nature is. If other 
reasons should make it probable that the Sutrakara was 
anxious to hide the true doctrine of the Upanishads as a 
sort of esoteric teaching, we might be more ready to accept 
S'ahkara’s mode of interpretation. But no such reasons 
are forthcoming ; nowhere among the avowed followers of 
the .Sankara system is there any tendency to treat the 
kernel of their philosophy as something to be jealously 
guarded and hidden. On the contrary, they all, from Gau- 
(^apdda down to the most modern writer, consider it their 
most important, nay, only task to inculcate again and again 
in the clearest and most unambiguous language that all 
appearance of multiplicity is a vain illusion, that the Lord 
and the individual souls are in reality one, and that all 
knowledge but this one knowledge is without true value. 

There remains one more important passage . concern- 
ing the relation of the individual soul to the highest Self, 
a passage which attracted our attention above, when 
we wei'e reviewing the evidence for early divergence of 
opinion among the teachers of the Vedanta. I mean 
I, 4, eo-aa, which three Sutras state the views of Ai'ma- 
rathya, Au^i'ulomi, and Kd^akrftsna as to the reason why, 
in a certain passage of the Brehadara^^yaka, characteristics 
of the individual soul are ascribed to the highest Self. The 
siddhanta view is enounced in Shtra aa, ‘ avasthiter iti Kdxa- 
krftsna/V i* e. K^jakrz'tsna (accounts for the circumstance 
mentioned) on the ground of the ‘permanent abiding or 
abode.’ By this ‘ permanent abiding ’ 6’ahkara understands 
the Lord’s abiding as, i. e. existing as — or in the condition of 
the individual soul, and thus sees in the Sutra an enuncia- 



c 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


tion of his own view that the individual soul is nothing' but the 
highest Self, ‘ avikn'ta/^ parame^varo ^ivo nanya/i.' Rdma- 
nu_^a, on the other hand, likewise accepting Ka^akrftsna’s 
opinion as the siddhanta view, explains ‘ avasthiti ’ as the 
Lord’s permanent abiding within the individual soul, as de- 
scribed in the antary^min-brdhmawa. — We can hardly main- 
tain that the term ‘avasthiti’ cannot have the meaning 
ascribed to it by S'ahkara, viz. special state or condition, but 
so much must be urged in favour of Ramanuja’s interpreta- 
tion that in the five other places where avasthiti (or ana- 
vasthiti) is met with in the Sutras (I, 3 , 17 ; II, 3, 4 ; II, 3 , 
13; II, 3, 34; III, 3, 33) it regularly means permanent 
abiding or permanent abode within something. 

If, now, I am shortly to sum up the results of the pre- 
ceding enquiry as to the teaching of the Sutras, I must 
give it as my opinion that they do not set forth the distinc- 
tion of a higher and lower knowledge of Brahman ; that 
they do not acknowledge the distinction of Brahman and 
Ijvara in 5 ahkara’s sense; that they do not hold the 
doctrine of the unreality of the world; and that they do 
not, with vSahkara, proclaim the absolute identity of the 
individual and the highest Self. I do not wish to advance 
for the present beyond these negative results. Upon 
Ramanuja’s mode of interpretation — although' I accept it 
without reserve in some important details — I look on the 
whole as more useful in providing us with a powerful means 
of criticising S'ahkara’s explanations than in guiding us 
throughout to the right understanding of the text. The 
author of the Sutras may have held views about the nature 
of Brahman, the world, and the soul differing from those of 
■Sankara, and yet not agreeing in all points with those of 
Riminuja. If, however, the negative conclusions stated 
above should be well founded, it would follow even from 
them that the system of Bddar^yawa had greater affinities 
with that of the Bhigavatas and R§,mdnuja than with the 
one of which the Sahkara-bhashya is the classical exponent. 

It appears from the above review of the teaching of the 
Shtras that only a comparatively very small proportion 
of them contribute matter enabling us to form a judgment 



INTRODUCTION. 


Cl 


as to the nature of the philosophical doctrine advocated 
by Badaraya/m. The reason of this is that the greater 
part of the work is taken up with matters which, according 
to Sankara’s terminology, form part of the so-called lower 
knowledge, and throw no light upon philosophical questions 
in the stricter sense of the word. This circumstance is not 
without significance. In later works belonging to Sankara’s 
school in which the distinction of a higher and lower vidy^ 
is clearly recognised, the topics constituting the latter are 
treated with great shortness ; and rightly so, for they are 
unable to accomplish the highest aim of man, i. e. final 
release. When we therefore, on the other hand, find that 
the subjects of the so-called lower vidya are treated very 
fully in the Vedanta-sutras, when we observe, for instance, 
the almost tedious length to which the investigation of the 
unity of vidyds (most of which are so-called sagiuza, i. e. 
lower vidyas) is carried in the third adhyaya, or the fact of 
almost the whole fourth adhydya being devoted to the 
ultimate fate of the possessor of the lower vidyd ; we cer- 
tainly feel ourselves confirmed in our conclusion that what 
6"ankara looked upon as comparatively unimportant formed 
in Badaraya«a’s opinion part of that knowledge higher than 
which there is none, and which therefore is entitled to the 
fullest and most detailed exposition. 

The question as to what kind of system is represented 
by the Vedanta-sutras may be approached in another way 
also. While hitherto we have attempted to penetrate to 
the meaning of the Sutras by means of the different com- 
mentaries, we might try the opposite road, and, in the first 
place, attempt to ascertain independently of the Sutras 
what doctrine is set forth in the Upanishads, whose teach- 
ing the Sutras doubtless aim at systematising. If, it might 
be urged, the Upanishads can be convincingly shown to 
embody a certain settled doctrine, we must consider it at 
the least highly probable that that very same doctrine — of 
whatever special nature it may be — is hidden in the enig- 
matical aphorisms of Badaraya^/a 

I do not, however, consider this line of argumentation 

^ Cp. Gough’s Philosophy of the Upanishads, pp. 240 ff. 




VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


cii 


a safe one. Even if it could be shown that the teaching of 
all the chief Upanishads agrees in all essential points (a 
subject to which some attention will be paid later on), we 
should not on that account be entitled unhesitatingly to 
assume that the Sutras set forth the same doctrine. What- 
ever the true philosophy of the Upanishads may be, there 
remains the undeniable fact that there exist and have 
existed since very ancient times not one but several essen- 
tially differing systems, all of which lay claim to the dis- 
tinction of being the true representatives of the teaching of 
the Upanishads as well as of the Sutras. Let us suppose, 
for argument’s sake, that, for instance, the doctrine of Maya 
is distinctly enunciated in the Upanishads ; nevertheless 
Ramanuja and, for all we know to the contrary, the whole 
series of more ancient commentators on whom he looked 
as authorities in the interpretation of the Sutras, denied 
that the Upanishads teach Maya, and it is hence by no 
means impossible that Badaraya/za should have done the 
same. The a priori style of reasoning as to the teaching 
of the Sutras is therefore without much force. 

But apart from any intention of arriving thereby at the 
meaning of the Sutras there, of course, remains for us the 
all-important question as to the true teaching of the Upa- * 
nishads, a question which a translator of the Sutras and 
vSahkara cannot afford to pass over in silence, especially 
after reason has been shown for the conclusion that the 
Sutras and the Eahkara-bhashya do not agree concerning 
most important points of Vedantic doctrine. The Sutras 
as well as the later commentaries claim, in the first place, 
to be nothing more than systematisations of the Upani- 
shads, and for us a considerable part at least of their value 
and* interest lies in this their nature. Hence the further 
question presents itself by whom the teaching of the Upa- 
nishads has been most adequately systematised, whether 
by Badarayazza, or Sankara, or Ramanuja, or some other 
commentator. This question requires to be kept altogether 
separate from the enquiry as to which commentator most 
faithfully renders the contents of the Sutras, and it is by 
no means impossible that Jahkara, for instance, should in 



INTRODUCTION. 


cm 


the end have to be declared a more trustworthy guide with 
regard to the teaching of the Upanishads than concerning 
the meaning of the Sutras. 

We must remark here at once that, whatever commenta- 
tor may be found to deserve preference on the whole, it 
appears fairly certain already at the outset that none of the 
systems which Indian ingenuity has succeeded in erecting 
on the basis of the Upanishads can be accepted in its 
entirety. The reason for this lies in the nature of the 
Upanishads themselves. To the Hindu commentator and 
philosopher the Upanishads came down as a body of 
revealed truth whose teaching had, somehow or other, to 
be shown to be thoroughly' consistent and free from contra- 
dictions ; a system had to be devised in which a suitable 
place could be allotted to every one of the multitudinous 
statements which they make on the various points of 
Vedantic doctrine. But to the European scholar, or in 
fact to any one whose mind is not bound by the doctrine 
of 6’ruti, it will certainly appear that all such attempts stand 
self-condemned. If anything is evident even on a cursory 
review of the Upanishads — and the impression so created 
is only strengthened by a more careful investigation — it is 
that they do not constitute a systematic whole. They 
themselves, especially the older ones, give the most unmis- 
takable indications on that point. Not only are the 
doctrines expounded in the different Upanishads ascribed 
to different teachers, but even the separate sections of one 
and the same Upanishad are assigned to different authorities. 
It would be superfluous to quote examples of what a 
mere look at the iT/zandogya Upanishad, for instance, 
suffices to prove. It is of course not impossible that even 
a multitude of teachers should agree in imparting precisely 
the same doctrine ; but in the case of the Upanishads that 
is certainly not antecedently probable. For, in the first 
place, the teachers who are credited with the doctrines 
of the Upanishads manifestly belonged to different sec- 
tions of Brahminical society, to different 'Vedic .fikhds ; 
nay, some of them the tradition makes out to have been 
kshattriyas. And, in the second place, the period, ’ whose 



CIV 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


mental activity is represented in the Upanishads, was a 
creative one, and as such cannot be judged according to 
the analogy of later periods of Indian philosophic de- 
velopment. The later philosophic schools as, for instance, 
the one of which Sankara is the great representative, 
were no longer free in their speculations, but strictly 
bound by a traditional body of texts considered sacred, 
which could not be changed or added to, but merely sys- 
tematised and commented upon. Hence the rigorous 
uniformity of doctrine characteristic of those schools. But 
there had been a time when, what later writers received as 
a sacred legacy, determining and confining the whole course 
of their speculations, first sprang from the minds of creative 
thinkers not fettered by the tradition of any school, but 
freely following the promptings of their own heads and 
hearts. By the absence of school traditions, I do not in- 
deed mean that the great teachers who appear in the 
Upanishads were free to make an entirely new start, and 
to assign to their speculations any direction they chose; 
for nothing can be more certain than that, at the period as 
the outcome of whose philosophical activity the Upanishads 
have to be considered, there were in circulation certain 
broad speculative ideas overshadowing the mind of every 
member of Brahminical society. But those ideas were 
neither very definite nor worked out in detail, and hence 
allowed themselves to be handled and fashioned in different 
ways by different individuals. With whom the few leading 
conceptions traceable in the teaching of all Upanishads 
first originated, is a point on which those writings themselves 
do not enlighten us, and which we have no other means 
for settling ; most probably they are to be viewed not 
as the creation of any individual mind, but as the gradual 
outcome of speculations carried on by generations of 
Vedic theologians. In the Upanishads themselves, at any 
rate, they appear as floating mental possessions which 
may be seized and moulded into new forms by any one 
who feels within himself the required inspiration. A 
certain vague knowledge of Brahman, the great hidden 
being in which all this manifold world is one, seems to be 



INTRODUCTION. 


CV 


spread everywhere, and often issues from the most unex- 
pected sources, ySvetaketu receives instruction from his 
father UddMaka | the proud Gargya has to become the 
pupil of A^atajatru, the king of Kaji; Bhu^m Sihya- 
yani receives answers to his questions from a Gandharva 
possessing a maiden ; Satyakdma learns what Brahman 
is from the bull of the herd he is tending, from Agni 
and from a flamingo; and Upako^ala is taught by the 
sacred fires in his teacher’s house. All this is of course 
legend, not history ; but the fact that the philosophic 
and theological doctrines of the Upanishads are clothed 
in this legendary garb certainly does not strengthen the ex- 
pectation of finding in them a rigidly systematic doctrine. 

And a clo.ser investigation of the contents of the Upani- 
shads amply confirms this preliminary impression. If we 
avail ourselves, for instance, of M. Paul Regnaud’s Materiaux 
pour servir a I’Histoire de la Philosophic de I’lnde, in which 
the philosophical lucubrations of the different Upanishads 
are arranged systematically according to topics, we can see 
with ease how, together with a certain uniformity of general 
leading conceptions, there runs throughout divergence in 
details, and very often not unimportant details. A look, 
for instance, at the collection of passages relative to the 
origination of the world from the primitive being, suffices to 
show that the task of demonstrating that whatever the 
Upanishads teach on that point can be made to fit into a 
homogeneous system is an altogether hopeless one. The 
accounts there given of the creation belong, beyond all doubt, 
to different stages of philosophic and theological development 
or else to different sections of priestly society. None but 
an Indian commentator would, I suppose, be inclined and 
sufficiently courageous to attempt the proof that, for in- 
stance, the legend of the atman purushavidha, the Self in 
the shape of a person which is as large as man and woman 
together, and then splits itself into two halves from which 
cows, horses, asses, goats, &c. are produced in succession 
(Bn. Up. I, I, 4), can be reconciled with the account given 
of the creation in the KMndogya. Upanishad, where it is 
said that in the beginning there existed nothing but the sat, 



CVl 


vedAnta-s^tras. 


‘ that which is,’ and that feeling a desire of being many it 
emitted out of itself ether, and then all the other elements 
in due succession. The former is a primitive cosmogonic 
myth, which in its details shows striking analogies with the 
cosmogonic myths of other nations; the latter account is 
fairly developed Vedinta (although not Vedanta implying 
the M^ya doctrine). We may admit that both accounts 
show a certain fundamental similarity in so far as they 
derive the manifold world from one original being ; but 
to go beyond this and to maintain, as A'ahkara does, that the 
atman purushavidha of the Brzhaddra7^yaka is the so-called 
Virdf of the latter Vedanta — implying thereby that that 
section consciously aims at describing only the activity of 
one special form of Ijvara, and not simply the whole pro- 
cess of creation — is the ingenious shift of an orthodox 
commentator in difficulties, but nothing more. 

How all those more or less conflicting texts came 
to be preserved and handed down to posterity, is not 
difficult to understand. As mentioned above, each of the 
great sections of Brahminical priesthood had its own 
sacred texts, and again in each of those sections there 
existed more ancient texts which it was impossible to dis- 
card when deeper and more advanced speculations began 
ill their turn to be embodied in literary compositions, which 
in the course of time likewise came to be looked upon as 
sacred. When the creative period had reached its termina- 
tion, and the task of collecting and arranging was taken in 
hand, older and newer pieces were combined into wholes, 
and thus there arose collections of such heterogeneous 
character as the W/zdndogya and Brzhadirazzyaka Upani- 
shads. On later generations, to which the whole body of 
texts came down as revealed truth, there consequently 
devolved the inevitable task of establishing systems on 
which no exception could be taken to any of the texts ; 
but that the task was, strictly speaking, an impossible one, 
i. e. one which it was impossible to accomplish fairly and 
honestly, there really is no reason to deny. 

For a comprehensive criticism of the methods which the 
different commentators employ in systematising the contents 



INTRODUCTION. 


evil 


of the Upanishads there is no room in this place. In order, 
however, to illustrate what is meant by the ' impossibility,’ 
above alluded to, of combining the various doctrines of the 
Upanishads into a whole without doing violence to a certain 
number of texts, it will be as well to analyse in detail some 
few at least of .Sankara’s interpretations, and to render clear 
the considerations by which he is guided. 

We begin with a case which has already engaged our 
attention when discussing the meaning of the Sutras, viz. 
the question concerning the ultimate fate of those who 
have attained the knowledge of Brahman. As we have 
seen, .Sankara teaches that the soul of him who has risen to 
an insight into the nature of the higher Brahman does 
not, at the moment of death, pass out of the body, but is 
directly merged in Brahman by a process from which all 
departing and moving, in fact all considerations of space, 
are altogether excluded. The soul of him, on the other 
hand, who has not risen above the knowledge of the lower 
qualified Brahman departs from the body by means of the 
artery called sushum^za, and following the so-called devayana, 
the path of the gods, mounts up to the world of Brahman. 
A review of the chief Upanishad texts on which .Saiikara 
founds this distinction will show how far it is justified. 

In a considerable number of passages the Upanishads 
contrast the fate of two classes of men, viz. of those 
who perform sacrifices and meritorious works only, and of 
those who in addition possess a certain kind of knowledge. 
Men of the former kind ascend after death to the moon, 
where they live for a certain time, and then return to the 
earth into new forms of embodiment ; persons of the latter 
kind proceed on the path of the gods — on which the sun 
forms one stage— up to the world of Brahman, from which 
there is no return. The chief passages to that effect are 
Kh. Up. V, 10 ; Kaush. Up. I, a ff. ; yimid. Up. I, 2, 9 ff.; 
Bri. Up. VI, 2, 15 fif. ; Prama Up. I, 9 ff. — In other passages 
only the latter of the two paths is referred to, cp. KJu Up. 
IV, 1 5 ; VIII, 6, 5 ; Taitt. Up. 1, 6 ; Bri. Up. IV, 4, 8, 9 ; V, 10 ; 
Maitr. Up. VI, 30, to mention only the more important ones. 

Now an impartial consideration of those passages shows 




CVIU 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS- 


I think, beyond any doubt, that what is meant there by the 
knowledge which leads through the sun to the world of 
Brahman is the highest knowledge of which the devotee is 
capable, and that the world of Brahman to which his know- 
ledge enables him to proceed denotes the highest state 
which he can ever reach, the state of final release, if we 
choose to call it by that name. — Kh. Up. V, lo says, ‘ Those 
who know this (viz. the doctrine of the five fires), and those 
who in the forest follow faith and austerities go to light,’ 
&c. — Kh. Up. IV, 15 is manifestly intended to convey the 
true knowledge of Brahman ; Upako.rala’s teacher himself 
represents the instruction given by him as superior to the 
teaching of the sacred fires. — Kh. Up. VIII, 6, 5 quotes the 
old Boka which says that the man moving upwards by the 
artery penetrating the crown of the head reaches the Im- 
mortal, — Kaush. Up. I, 3 — which gives the most detailed 
account of the ascent of the soul — contains no intimation 
whatever of the knowledge of Brahman, which leads up to 
the Brahman world, being of an inferior nature. — MmucL. Up. 
I, 3, 9 agrees with the iT/^andogya in saying that ‘ Those 
who practise penance and faith in the forest, tranquil, wise, 
and living on alms, depart free from passion, through the 
sun, to where that immortal Person dwells whose nature is 
imperishable,’ and nothing whatever in the context coun- 
tenances the assumption that not the highest knowledge 
and the highest Person are there referred to. — Bn. Up. 
IV, 4, 8 quotes old jlokas clearly referring to the road 
of the gods (‘the small old path’), on which ‘sages who 
know Brahman move on to the svargaloka and thence 
higher on as entirely free, — That path was found by Brah- 
man, and on it goes whoever knows Brahman.’ — Brf. Up. 
VI, 3, 15 is another version of the Pa;//^agnividy^, with the 
variation, ‘Those who know this, and those who in the 
forest worship faith and the True, go to light,’ &c. — Praj-na 
Up. 1 , 10 says, ‘ Those who have sought the Self by penance, 
abstinence, faith, and knowledge gain by the northern path 
Aditya, the sun. There is the home of the spirits, the im- 
mortal free from danger, the highest. From thence they do 
not return, for it is the end.’ — Maitr. Up, VI, 30 quotes 



INTRODUCTION. 


CIX 


jlokas, ' One of them (the arteries) leads upwards, piercing 
the solar orb : by it, having stepped beyond the world of 
Brahman, they go to the highest path.’ 

All these passages are as clear as can be desired. The 
soul of the sage who knows Brahman passes out by the 
sushum^a, and ascends by the path of the gods to the 
world of Brahman, there to remain for ever in some bliss- 
ful state. But, according to .Sankara, all these texts are 
meant to set forth the result of a certain inferior knowledge 
only, of the knowledge of the conditioned Brahman. Even 
in a passage apparently so entirely incapable of more than 
one interpretation as 'Bri. Up. VI, 3 , 15, the ‘ True,’ which 
the holy hermits in the forest are said to worship, is not to 
be the highest Brahman, but only Hira/^yagarbha ! — And 
why ? — Only because the system so demands it, the system 
which teaches that those who know the highest Brahman 
become on their death one with it, without having to resort 
to any other place. The passage on which this latter tenet is 
chiefly based is Bn. Up. IV, 4, 6, 7, where, with the fate of him 
who at his death has desires, and whose soul therefore 
enters a new body after having departed from the old one, 
accompanied by all the prd^^as, there is contrasted the fate 
of the sage free from all desires. ‘ But as to the man who does 
not desire, who not desiring, freed from desires is satisfied 
in his desires, or desires the Self only, the vital spirits of him 
(tasya) do not depart — being Brahman he goes to Brahman.' 

We have seen above (p. Ixxx) that this passage is referred 
to in the important Sfitras on whose right interpretation it, 
in the first place, depends whether or not we must admit 
the Sutrakara to have acknowledged the distinction of a para 
and an apar^ vidya. Here the passage interests us as 
throwing light on the way in which S'atikara systematises. 
He looks on the preceding part of the chapter as describing 
what happens to the souls of all those who do not know the 
highest Brahman, inclusive of those who know the lower 
Brahman only. They pass out of the old bodies followed by 
all pr^;^as and enter new bodies. He, on the other hand, 
section 6 continues, who knows the true Brahman, does not 
pass out of the body, but becomes one with Brahman then 




vedAnta-sutras. 


CX' 


and there. This interpretation of the purport of the entire 
chapter is not impossibly right, although I am rather in- 
clined to think that the chapter aims at setting forth in its 
earlier part the future of him who does not know Brahman 
at all, while the latter part of section 6 passes on to him 
who does know Brahman (i. e. Brahman pure and simple, 
the text knowing of no distinction of the so-called lower 
and higher Brahman). In explaining section 6 6 'ahkara 
lays stress upon the clause ‘ na tasya pra 7 /a iitkrAmanti,’ 
‘ his vital spirits do not pass out,’ taking this to signify that 
the soul with the vital spirits does not move at all, and 
thus does not ascend to the world of Brahman ; while the 
purport of the clause may simply be that the soul and vital 
spirits do not go anywhere else, i.e. do not enter a new 
body, but are united, somehow or other, with Brahman. 
On 6 'ahkara’s interpretation there immediately arises a 
new difficulty. In the Bokas, quoted under sections 8 
and 9 , the description of the small old path which leads to 
the svargaloka and higher on clearly, refers — as noticed 
already above — to the path through the veins, primarily 
the sushumwA, on which, according to so many other pas- 
sages, the soul of the wise mounts upwards. But that path 
is, according to .Sankara, followed by him only who has 
not risen above the lower knowledge, and yet the riokas 
have manifestly to be connected with what is said in the 
latter half of 6 about the owner of the para vidyA. Hence 
.Sankara sees himself driven to explain the riokas- in 
8 and 9 (of which a faithful translation is given in Professor 
Max Muller’s version) as follows : 

8 . ‘ The subtle old path (i. e. the path of knowledge on 
which final release is reached; which path is subtle, i.e. 
difficult to know, and old, i. e. to be known from the eternal 
Veda) has been obtained and fully reached by me. On it 
the sages who know Brahman reach final release (svarga- 
lokaj-abda/^ samnihitaprakara^^At mokshdbhidhayaka/^). 

9 . ' On that path they say that there is white or blue or 
yellow or green or red (i.e. others maintain that the path 
to final release is, in accordance with the colour of the 
arteries, either white or blue, &c. ; but that is false, for th? 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXI 


paths through the arteries lead at the best to the world of 
Brahman, which itself forms part of the sawsira) ; that 
path (i. e. the only path to release, viz. the path of true 
knowledge) is found by Brahman, i. e. by such Brdhma;zas 
as through true knowledge have become like Brahman,’ &c. 

A significant instance in truth of the straits to which 
thorough-going systematisers of the Upanishads see them- 
selves reduced occasionally ! 

But we return to the point which just now chiefly interests 
us. Whether .Sankara’s interpretation of the chapter, and 
especially of section 6, be right or wrong, so much is 
certain that we are not entitled to view all those texts 
which speak of the soul going to the world of Brah- 
man as belonging to the so-called lower knowledge, be- 
cause a few other passages declare that the sage does 
not go to Brahman. The text which declares the sage 
free from desires to become one with Brahman could not, 
without due discrimination, be used to define and limit the 
meaning of other passages met with in the same Upanishad 
even — for as we have remarked above the Br^haddra^^^yaka 
contains pieces manifestly belonging to different stages of 
development ; — much less does it entitle us to put arbitrary 
constructions on passages forming part of other Upanishads. 
Historically the disagreement of the various accounts is 
easy to understand. The older notion was that the soul of 
the wise man proceeds along the path of the gods to Brah- 
man’s abode. A later — and, if we like, more philosophic — 
conception is that, as Brahman already is a man’s Self, 
there is no need of any motion on man’s part to reach 
Brahman. We may even apply to those two views the 
terms apard and pari — lower and higher — knowledge. But 
we must not allow any commentator to induce us to 
believe that what he from his advanced standpoint looks 
upon as an inferior kind of cognition, was viewed in the 
same light by the authors of the Upanishads. 

We turn to another Upanishad text likewise touching 
upon the point considered in what precedes, viz. the second 
Brihma«a of the third adhyiya of the Briha.dkra.nya.'kd.. 
The discussion there first turns upon the grahas and ati- 



CXll 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


grahas, i. e. the senses and organs and their objects, and 
Y%-«avalkya thereupon explains that death, by which 
everything is overcome, is itself overcome by water; for 
death is fire. The colloquy then turns to what we must 
consider an altogether new topic, Artabhiga asking, ‘ When 
this man (ayam purusha) dies, do the vital spirits depart 
from him or not?’ and Yag'^avalkya answering, ‘No, they 
are gathered up in him ; he swells, he is inflated ; inflated 
the dead (body) is lying.’ — Now this is for 6’ankara an 
important passage, as we have already seen above (p. Ixxxi) ; 
for he employs it, in his comment on Ved.-sutra IV, 2, 13, 
for the purpose of proving that the passage Bn, Up. IV, 
4, 6 really means that the vital spirits do not, at the moment 
of death, depart from the true sage. Hence the present 
passage also must refer to him who possesses the highest 
knowledge ; hence the ‘ ayam purusha ’ must be ‘ that man,’ 
i. e. the man who possesses the highest knowledge, and the 
highest knowledge then must be found in the preceding 
clause which says that death itself may be conquered by 
water. But, as Rim^nu^a also remarks, neither does the 
context favour the assumption that the highest knowledge 
is referred to, nor do the words of section ii contain 
any indication that what is meant is the merging of the 
Self of the true Sage in Brahman. With the interpretation 
given by Rdmdnu^a himself, viz. that the pr^was do not 
depart from the ^iva of the dying man, but accompany it 
into a new body, I can agree as little (although he no doubt 
rightly explains the ‘ ayam purusha’ by ‘ man’ in general), 
and am unable to see in the passage anything more than a 
crude attempt to account for the fact that a dead body 
appears swollen and inflated. — A little further on (section 
13) Artabh^ga asks what becomes of this man (ayam 
purusha) when his speech has entered into the fire, his 
breath into the air, his eye into the sun, &c. So much 
here is clear that we have no right to understand by the 
‘ayam purusha’ of section 13 anybody different from the 
‘ayam purusha’ of the two preceding sections; in spite of 
this vSankai'a — according to whose system the organs of the 
true sage do not enter into the elements, but are directly 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXlll 


merged in Brahman — explains the ‘ ayam purusha ’ of sec- 
tion 13 to be the ‘asa?;^yagdarj-in/ i. e. the person who has 
not risen to the cognition of the highest Brahman. And 
still a further limiting interpretation is required by the 
system. The asawyagdarjin also — who as such has to 
remain in the sawsira — cannot do without the organs, since 
his ^iva when passing out of the old body into a new one 
is invested with the subtle body; hence section 13 cannot 
be taken as saying what it clearly does say, viz. that at 
death the different organs pass into the different elements, 
but as merely indicating that the organs are abandoned by 
the divinities which, during lifetime, presided over them ! 

The whole third adhyaya indeed of the Brfhadara/zyaka 
affords ample proof of the artificial character of .Sankara’s 
attempts to show that the teaching of the Upanishads 
follows a definite system. The eighth brdhma 72 a, for in- 
stance, is said to convey the doctrine of the highest non- 
related Brahman, while the preceding brdhmawas had treated 
only of trvara in his various aspects. But, as a matter of 
fact, brahma/2a 8, after having, in section 8, represented 
Brahman as destitute of all qualities, proceeds, in the next 
section, to describe that very same Brahman as the ruler of 
the world, ‘ By the command of that Imperishable sun and 
moon stand apart,’ &c. ; a clear indication that the author 
of the Upanishad does not distinguish a higher and lower 
Brahman in 6'ankara’s sense. — The preceding brihma^a (7) 
treats of the antaryimin, i. e. Brahman viewed as the internal 
ruler of everything. This, according to 5 ankara, is the 
lower form of Brahman called l.yvara ; but we observe that 
the antaryimin as well as the so-called highest Brahman 
described in section 8 is, at the termination of the two 
sections, characterised by means of the very same terms 
(7, 23 : Unseen but seeing, unheard but hearing, &c. There 
is no other seer but he, there is no other hearer but he, &c. ; 
and 8, II : That Brahman is unseen but seeing, unheard but 
hearing, &c. There is nothing that sees but it, nothing that 
hears but it, &c.). — Nothing can be clearer than that all 
these sections aim at describing one and the same being, 
and know nothing of the distinctions made by the developed 
[34] h 



CXIV 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


Vedanta, however valid the latter may be from a purely 
philosophic point of view. 

We may refer to one more similar instance from the 
WMndogya Upanishad. We there meet in III, 14 with 
one of the most famous vidyas describing the nature of 
Brahman, called after its reputed author the Sai^i^ilya-vidyL 
This small vidyd is decidedly one of the finest and most 
characteristic texts ; it would be difficult to point out 
another passage setting forth with greater force and elo- 
quence and in an equally short compass the central doctrine 
of the Upanishads. Yet this text, which, beyond doubt, 
gives utterance to the highest conception of Brahman’s 
nature that S^udi\ya.’s thought was able to reach, is by 
Sankara and his school again declared to form part of the 
lower vidya only, because it represents Brahman as possess- 
ing qualities. It is, according to their terminology, not 
^;14na, i. e. knowledge, but the injunction of a mere upd,san^, 
a devout meditation on Brahman in so far as possessing 
certain definite attributes such as having light for its form, 
having true thoughts, and so on. The Rdminu^as, on the 
other hand, quote this text with preference as clearly 
describing the nature of their highest, i. e. their one Brah- 
man. We again allow that Sankara is free to deny that 
any text which ascribes qualities to Brahman embodies abso- 
lute truth ; but we also again remark that there is no reason 
whatever for supposing that Sandilya., or whoever may have 
been the author of that vidya, looked upon it as anything 
else but a statement of the highest truth accessible to man. 

We return to the question as to the true philosophy of 
the Upanishads, apart from the systems of the commen- 
tators. — From what precedes it will appear with sufficient 
distinctness that, if we understand by philosophy a philo- 
sophical system coherent in all its parts, free from all 
contradictions and allowing room for all the different state- 
ments made in all the chief Upanishads, a philosophy of 
the Upanishads cannot even be spoken of. The various 
lucubrations on Brahman, the world, and the human soul of 
which the Upanishads consist do not allow themselves to 
be systematised simply because they were never meant to 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXV 


form a system. 54«ifilya's views as to the nature of 
Brahman did not in all details agree with those of Ya^wa- 
valkya, and Uddalaka differed from both. In this there is 
nothing to wonder at, and the burden of proof rests alto- 
gether with those who maintain that a large number of 
detached philosophic and theological dissertations, ascribed 
to different authors, doubtless belonging to different periods, 
and not seldom manifestly contradicting each other, admit 
of being combined into a perfectly consistent whole. 

The question, however, assumes a different aspect, if we 
take the terms ‘ philosophy ' and ‘ philosophical system,’ not 
in the strict sense in which Sankara and other commentators 
are not afraid of taking them, but as implying merely an 
agreement in certain fundamental features. In this latter 
sense we may indeed undertake to indicate the outlines of 
a philosophy of the Upanishads, only keeping in view that 
precision in details is not to be aimed at. And here we 
finally see ourselves driven back altogether on the texts 
themselves, and have to acknowledge that the help we 
receive from commentators, to whatever school they may 
belong, is very inconsiderable. Fortunately it cannot be 
asserted that the texts on the whole oppose very serious 
difficulties to a right understanding, however obscure the 
details often are. Concerning the ' latter we occasionally 
depend entirely on the explanations vouchsafed by the 
scholiasts, but as far as the general drift and spirit of the 
texts are concerned, we are quite able to judge by our- 
selves, and are even specially qualified to do so by having 
no particular system to advocate. 

The point we will first touch upon is the same from which 
we started when examining the doctrine of the Sutras, viz. 
the question whether the Upanishads acknowledge a higher 
and lower knowledge in S’ankara’s sense, i. e. a knowledge 
of a higher and a lower Brahman. Now this we find not to 
be the case. Knowledge is in the Upanishads frequently 
opposed to avidy4, by which latter term we have to under- 
stand ignorance as to Brahman, absence of philosophic 
knowledge ; and, again, in several places we find the know- 
ledge of the sacrificial part of the Veda with its supple- 



cxvi 


vedanta-sOtras. 


mentary disciplines contrasted as inferior with the knowledge 
of the Self ; to which latter distinction the Mu;z(^aka Up. 
(I, 4) applies the terms apara and para vidya. But a formal 
recognition of the essential difference of Brahman being 
viewed, on the one hand, as possessing distinctive attributes, 
and, on the other hand, as devoid of all such attributes is not 
to be met with anywhere. Brahman is indeed sometimes 
described as saguwa and sometimes as nirguwa (to use later 
terms) ; but it is nowhere said that thereon rests a distinc- 
tion of two different kinds of knowledge leading to altogether 
different results. The knowledge of Brahman is one, under 
whatever aspects it is viewed ; hence the circumstance 
(already exemplified above) that in the same vidyds it is 
spoken of as sagiiwa as well as nirguwa. When the mind 
of the writer dwells on the fact that Brahman is that from 
which all this world originates, and in which it rests, he 
naturally applies to it distinctive attributes pointing at its 
relation to the world ; Brahman, then, is called the Self and 
life of all, the inward ruler, the omniscient Lord, and so on. 
When, on the other hand, the author follows out the idea 
that Brahman may be viewed in itself as the mysterious 
reality of which the whole expanse of the world is only an 
outward manifestation, then it strikes him that no idea or 
term derived from sensible experience can rightly be applied 
to it, that nothing more may be predicated of it but that it 
is neither this nor that. But these are only two aspects of 
the cognition of one and the same entity. 

Closely connected with the question as to the double 
nature of the Brahman of the Upanishads is the question 
as to their teaching Mayd, — From Colebrooke downwards 
the majority of European writers have inclined towards the 
opinion that the doctrine of M^ya, i. e. of the unreal illusory 
character of the sensible world, does not constitute a feature 
of the primitive philosophy of the Upanishads, but was 
introduced into the system at some later period, whether by 
BidarAya?za or 6'ankara or somebody else. The opposite 
view, viz. that the doctrine of Mayi forms an integral 
element of the teaching of the Upanishads, is implied in 
them everywhere, and enunciated more or less distinctly in 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXVll 


more than one place, has in recent times been advocated 
with much force by Mr. Gough in the ninth chapter of his 
Philosophy of the Upanishads. 

In his Materiaux, &c. M. Paul Regnaud remarks that 
' the doctrine of May4, although implied in the teaching 
of the Upanishads, could hardly become clear and explicit 
before the system had reached a stage of development 
necessitating a choice between admitting two co-existent 
eternal principles (which became the basis of the Sahkhya 
philosophy), and accepting the predominance of the intel- 
lectual principle, which in the end necessarily led to the 
negation of the opposite principle.’ — To the two alterna- 
tives here referred to as possible we, however, have to add 
a third one, viz. that form of the Vedanta of which the 
theory of the Bhagavatas or Ramanujas is the most 
eminent type, and according to which Brahman carries 
within its own nature an element from which the material 
universe originates ; an element which indeed is not an in- 
dependent entity like the pradhina of the Sahkhyas, but 
which at the same time is not an unreal Maya but quite as real 
as any other part of Brahman’s nature. That a doctrine of 
this character actually developed itself on the basis of the Upa- 
nishads, is a circumstance which we clearly must not lose sight 
of, when attempting to determine what the Upanishads them- 
selves are teaching concerning the character of the world. 

In enquiring whether the Upanishads maintain the Maya 
doctrine or not, we must proceed with the same caution as 
regards other parts of the system, i. e. we must refrain from 
using unhesitatingly, and without careful consideration of the 
merits of each individual case, the teaching — direct or inferred 
— of any one passage to the end of determining the drift of 
the teaching of other passages. We may admit that some 
passages, notably of the Brzhadara^/yaka, contain at any 
rate the germ of the later developed Miya doctrine^ and 
thus render it quite intelligible that a system like 6'ahkara’s 

It is well known that, with the exception of the . 5 'vct&xvatara and Maitr^- 
yaniya, none of the chief Upanishads exhibits the word ‘ niS-yS,.’ The terra indeed 
occurs in one place in the B?VhadS,ra?^yaka ; but that passage is a quotation 
fi ora the /ffk Sa/«hitS, in which inayS. means ‘ creative power.’ Cp. P. Regnaud, 
La MlyS., in the Revire de I’Histoire des Religions, tome xii, No. 3 (1885). 




CXVlll 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


should evolve itself, among others, out of the Upanishads ; 
but that affords no valid reason for interpreting MAya into 
other texts which give a very satisfactory sense without that 
doctrine, or are even clearly repugnant to it. This remark 
applies in the very first place to all the accounts of the 
creation of the physical universe. There, if anywhere, the 
illusional character of the world should have been hinted at, 
at least, had that theory been held by the authors of those 
accounts ; but not a word to that effect is met with any- 
where. The most important of those accounts — the one 
given in the sixth chapter of the /l7zandogya Upanishad — 
forms no exception. There is absolutely no reason to 
assume that the ‘ sending forth’ of the elements from the 
primitive Sat, which is there described at length, was by 
the writer of that passage meant to represent a vivarta 
rather than a panVmma, that the process of the origination 
of the physical universe has to be conceived as anything else 
but a real manifestation of real powers hidden in the 
primeval Self. The introductory words, addressed to 
6'vetaketu by Uddalaka, which are generally appealed to as 
intimating the unreal character of the evolution about to be 
described, do not, if viewed impartially, intimate any such 
thing h For what is capable of being proved, and mani- 
festly meant to be proved, by the illustrative instances of 
the lump of clay and the nugget of gold, through which 
there are known all things made of clay and gold ? Merely 
that this whole world has Brahman for its causal substance, 
just as clay is the causal matter of every earthen pot, and 
gold of every golden ornament, but not that the process 
through which any causal substance becomes an effect is 
an unreal one. We — including Uddalaka — may surely say 
that all earthen pots are in reality nothing but earth — the 
earthen pot being merely a special modification (vikara) of 
clay which has a name of its own — without thereby com- 
mitting ourselves to the doctrine that the change of form, 
which a lump of clay undergoes when being fashioned into 
a pot, is not real but a mere baseless illusion. 

In the same light we have to view numerous other passages 


^ As is demonstiated very satisfactorily by RamS.nu^a. 



INTRODUCTION, 


CXIX 


which set forth the successive emanations proceeding from 
the first principle. When, for instance, we meet in the KaMa 
Up. I, 3, lo, in the serial enumeration of the forms of exist- 
ence intervening between the gross material world and the 
highest Self (the Person), with the ‘ avyaknta,’ the Unde- 
veloped, immediately below the purusha ; and when again 
the Mu7^i/aka Up. II, i, 2 , speaks of the ‘ high Imperishable ’ 
higher than which is the heavenly Person; there is no 
reason whatever to see in that ‘ Undeveloped ’ and that 
‘high Imperishable’ anything but that real element in 
Brahman from which, as in the Ramanuja system, the 
material universe springs by a process of real development. 
We must of course render it quite clear to ourselves in what 
sense the terms ‘ real ’ and ‘ unreal ’ have to be understood. 
The Upanishads no doubt teach emphatically that the 
material world does not owe its existence to any principle 
independent from the Lord like the pradhana of the 
Sihkhyas ; the world is nothing but a manifestation of the 
Lord’s wonderful power, and hence is unsubstantial, if we 
take the term ‘ substance ’ in its strict sense. And, again, 
everything materialisimmeasurably inferior in nature to the 
highe.st spiritual principle from which it has emanated, and 
which it now hides from the individual soul. But neither 
unsubstantiality nor inferiority of the kind mentioned 
constitutes unreality in the sense in which the Miya of 
.Sankara is unreal. According to the latter the whole 
world is nothing but an erroneous appearance, as unreal as 
the snake, for which a piece of rope is mistaken by the 
belated traveller, and disappearing just as the imagined 
snake does as soon as the light of true knowledge has risen. 
But this is certainly not the impression left on the mind by 
a comprehensive review of the Upanishads which dwells on 
their general scope, and does not confine itself to the undue 
urging of what may be implied in some detached passages. 
The Upanishads do not call upon us to look upon the whole 
world as a baseless illusion to be destroyed by knowledge ; 
the great error which they admonish us to relinquish is 
rather that things have a separate individual existence, and 
are not tied together by the bond of being all of them effects 



cxx 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


of Brahman, or Brahman itself. They do not say that true 
knowledge sublates this false world, as 5arikara says, but 
that it enables the sage to extricate himself from the world 
— the inferior murta rupa of Brahman, to use an expression 
of the Bn'had^rawyaka — and to become one with Brahman 
in its highest form. ‘ We are to see everything in Brahman, 
and Brahman in everything;’ the natural meaning of this is, 
‘ we are to look upon this whole world as a true manifesta- 
tion of Brahman, as sprung from it and animated by it.’ 
The mayavidin has indeed appropriated the above saying 
also, and interpreted it so as to fall in with his theory ; but 
he is able to do so only by perverting its manifest sense. 
For him it would be appropriate to say, not that every- 
thing we see is in Brahman, but rather that everything we 
see is out of Brahman, viz. as a false appearance spread 
over it and hiding it from us. 

Stress has been laid^ upon certain passages of the 
B;^zhadira/zyaka which seem to hint at the unreality of 
this world by qualifying terms, indicative of duality or plur- 
ality of existence, by means of an added ‘ iva,’ i.e. ‘ as it were’ 
(yatr^nyad iva syat ; yatra dvaitam iva bhavati ; atm4 
dhyayativa lelayativa). Those passages no doubt readily 
lend themselves to Mayd interpretations, and it is by no 
means impossible that in their author’s mind there was 
something like an undeveloped Mayd doctrine. I must, how- 
ever, remark that they, on the other hand, also admit of 
easy interpretations not in any way presupposing the 
theory of the unreality of the world. If Ya^; 2 avalkya refers 
to the latter as that ‘ where there is something else as it 
were, where there is duality as it were,’ he may simply mean 
to indicate that the ordinary opinion, according to which 
the individual forms of existence of the world are opposed 
to each other as altogether separate, is a mistaken one, all 
things being one in so far as they spring from — and are 
parts of — Brahman. This would in no way involve duality 
or plurality being unreal in 5ahkara’s sense, not any more 
than, for instance, the modes of Spinoza are unreal because, 
according to that philosopher, there is only one universal 


^ Gough, Philosophy of the Upanishads pp. 243 if. 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXXl 


substance. And with regard to the clause ‘ the Self thinks 
as it were ’ it ,has to be noted that according to the com- 
mentators the ‘ as it were ' is meant to indicate that truly 
not the Self is thinking, but the upidhis, i. e. especially the 
manas with which the Self is connected. But whether 
these upadhis are the mere offspring of Mayi, as S'ahkara 
thinks, or real forms of existence, as Ramanuja teaches, is 
an altogether different question. 

I do not wish, however, to urge these last observations, 
and am ready to admit that not impossibly those iva’s 
indicate that the thought of the writer who employed them 
was darkly labouring wdth a conception akin to — although 
much less explicit than — the Mdyd of S'ahkara. But 
what I object to is, that conclusions drawn from a few 
passages of, after all, doubtful import should be employed 
for introducing the Mayd doctrine into other passages which 
do not even hint at it, and are fully intelligible without it 

The last important point in the teaching of the Upanishads 
we have to touch upon is the relation of the ^ivas, the in- 
dividual souls to the highest Self. The special views 
regarding that point held by S’ahkara and Ramdnu^a 
have been stated before. Confronting their theories with 
the texts of the Upanishads we must, I think, admit with- 
out hesitation, that S’ahkara’s doctrine faithfully represents 
the prevailing teaching of the Upanishads in one important 
point at least, viz. therein that the soul or Self of the sage 
— whatever its original relation to Brahman may be — is in 
the end completely merged and indistinguishably lost in the 
universal Self. A distinction, repeatedly alluded to before, 
has indeed to be kept in view here also. Certain texts 
of the Upanishads describe the soul’s going upwards, on the 
path of the gods, to the world of Brahman, where it dwells 
for unnumbered years, i.e. for ever. Those texts, as a type 
of which we may take the passage Kaushit. Up. I— the 
fundamental text of the Raminu^as concerning the soul’s 

^ I cannot disctiss in this place the May^ passages of the 6'vetajvatara 
and the Haiti ^yaniya Upanishads. Reasons which want of space prevents me 
from setting forth in detail induce me to believe that neither of those two 
treatises deserves to be considered by us when wishing to ascertain the true 
unmixed doctrine of the Upanishads. 



CXXll 


vedAnta-s^tkas. 


fate after death — belong to an earlier stage of philosophic 
development ; they manifestly ascribe to the soul a con- 
tinued individual existence. But mixed with texts of 
this class there are others In which the final absolute 
identification of the individual Self with the universal Self 
is indicated in terms of unmistakable plainness. ‘ He who 
knows Brahman and becomes Brahman ; ’ ‘ he who knows 
Brahman becomes all this ; ’ ^ as the flowing rivers disappear 
in the sea losing their name and form, thus a wise man goes 
to the divine person,’ And if we look to the whole, to the 
prevailing spirit of the Upanishads, we may call the doctrine 
embodied in passages of the latter nature the doctrine of the 
Upanishads. It is, moreover, supported by the frequently 
and clearly stated theory of the individual souls being 
merged in Brahman in the state of deep dreamless sleep. 

It is much more difificult to indicate the precise teaching 
of the Upanishads concerning the original relation of the 
individual soul to the highest Self, although there can be 
no doubt that it has to be viewed as proceeding from the 
latter, and somehow forming a part of it. Negatively we 
are entitled to say that the doctrine, according to which 
the soul is merely brahma bhrantam or brahma m^'opd- 
dhikam, is in no way countenanced by the majority of the 
passages bearing on the question. If the emission of the 
elements, described in the i^’Aandogya and referred to 
above, is a real process — of which we saw no reason to 
doubt — the ^iva Atman with which the highest Self enters 
into the emitted elements is equally real, a true part or 
emanation of Brahman itself. 

After having in this way shortly reviewed the chief ele- 
ments of Vedantic doctrine according to the Upanishads, we 
may briefly consider Sankara’s system and mode of inter- 
pretation — with whose details we had frequent opportunities 
of finding fault — as a whole. It has been said before that 
the task of reducing the teaching of the whole of the Upa- 
nishads to a system consistent and free from contradic- 
tions is an intrinsically impossible one. But the task once 
being given, we are quite ready to admit that 6'ankara’s 
system is most probably the best which can be devised. 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXXUl 


While unable to allow that the Upanishads recognise a 
lower and higher knowledge of Brahman, in fact the dis- 
tinction of a lower and higher Brahman, we yet acknowledge 
that the adoption of that distinction furnishes the inter- 
preter with an instrument of extraordinary power for 
reducing to an orderly whole the heterogeneous material 
presented by the old theosophic treatises. This becomes 
very manifest as soon as we compare Tahkara's system 
with that of Rdmanu^a. The latter recognises only one 
Brahman which is, as we should say, a personal God, and 
he therefore lays stress on all those passages of the Upani- 
shads which ascribe to Brahman the attributes of a personal 
God, such as omniscience and omnipotence. Those passages, 
on the other hand, whose decided tendency it is to represent 
Brahman as transcending all qualities, as one undifferenced 
mass of impersonal intelligence, Raminu^a is unable to 
accept frankly and fairly, and has to misinterpret them 
more or less to make them fall in with his system. The 
same remark holds good with regard to those texts which 
represent the individual soul as finally identifying itself 
with Brahman ; Rimanu^a cannot allow a complete identi- 
fication but merely an assimilation carried as far as possible. 
Sankara, on the other hand, by skilfully ringing the changes 
on a higher and a lower doctrine, somehow manages to find 
room for whatever the Upanishads have to say. Where 
the text speaks of Brahman as transcending all attributes, 
the highest doctrine is set forth. Where Brahman is called 
the All-knowing ruler of the world, the author means to 
propound the lower knowledge of the Lord only. And 
where the legends about the primary being and its way of 
creating the world become somewhat crude and gross, 
Hira«yagarbha and Vir^- are summoned forth and charged 
with the responsibility. Of Vir^^ Mr. Gough remarks (p. 55) 
that in him a place is provided by the poets of the Upani- 
shads for the purusha of the ancient rfshis, the divine being 
out of whom the visible and tangible world proceeded. 
This is quite true if only we substitute for the ‘ poets of 
the Upanishads' the framers of the orthodox Vedanta 
system — for the Upanishads give no indication whatever 



CXXIV 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


that by their purusha they understand not the simple old 
purusha but the Vird^ occupying a definite position in a 
highly elaborate system ; — but the mere phrase, ‘ providing a 
place ’intimates with sufficient clearness the nature of the work 
in which systematisers of the Vedantic doctrine are engaged. 

Sankara’s method thus enables him in a certain way to 
do justice to different stages of historical development, to 
recognise clearly existing differences which other system- 
atisers are intent on obliterating. And there has yet to 
be made a further and even more important admission in 
favour of his system. It is not only more pliable, more 
capable of amalgamating heterogeneous material than other 
systems, but its fundamental doctrines are manifestly in 
greater harmony with the essential teaching of the Upani- 
shads than those of other Vedintic systems. Above we were 
unable to allow that the distinction made by 6'ankara 
between Brahman and l.yvara is known to the Upanishads ; 
but we must now admit that if, for the purpose of determining 
the nature of the highest being, a choice has to be made 
between those texts which represent Brahman as nirgiu/a, 
and those which ascribe to it personal attributes, Sankara 
is right in giving preference to texts of the former kind. 
The Brahman of the old Upanishads, from which the souls 
spring to enjoy individual consciousness in their waking 
state, and into which they sink back temporarily in the 
state of deep dreamless sleep and permanently in death, is 
certainly not represented adequately by the strictly per- 
sonal ii'vara of Ram^nu^a, who rules the world in wisdom and 
mercy. The older Upanishads, at any rate, lay very little 
stress upon personal attributes of their highest being, and 
hence 5ahkara is right in so far as he assigns to his hypo- 
statised personal l.s'vara^ a lower place than to his absolute 
Brahman. That he also faithfully represents the prevailing 
spirit of the Upanishads in his theory of the ultimate fate 

^ The Uvara who allots to the individual souls their new forms of embodiment 
in strict accordance with their merit or demerit cannot be called anything else 
but a personal God. That this personal conscious being is at the same time iden- 
tified with the totality of the individual souls in the unconscious state of deep 
dreamless sleep, is one of those extraordinary contradictions which thorough-going 
systematisers of Ved&ntic doctrine are appaiently unable to avoid altogether. 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXXV 


of the soul, we have already remarked above. And although 
the Miy^ doctrine cannot, in my opinion, be said to form 
part of the teaching of the Upanishads, it cannot yet be 
asserted to contradict it openly, because the very point 
which it is meant to elucidate, viz. the mode in which the 
physical universe and the multiplicity of individual souls 
originate, is left by the Upanishads very much in the dark. 
The later growth of the Maya doctrine on the basis of the 
Upanishads is therefore quite intelligible, and I fully agree 
with Mr. Gough when he says regarding it that there has 
been no addition to the system from without but only a 
development from within, no graft but only growth. The 
lines of thought which finally led to the elaboration of the 
full-blown Maya theory may be traced with considerable 
certainty. In the first place, deepening speculation on 
Brahman tended to the notion of advaita being taken in a 
more and more strict sense, as implying not only the ex- 
clusion of any second principle external to Brahman, but 
also the absence of any elements of duality or plurality in 
the nature of the one universal being itself; a tendency 
agreeing with the spirit of a certain set of texts from the 
Upanishads. And as the fact of the appearance of a 
manifold world cannot be denied, the only way open to 
thoroughly consistent speculation was to deny at any rate 
its reality, and to call it a mere illusion due to an unreal 
principle, with which Brahman is indeed associated, but 
which is unable to break the unity of Brahman’s nature 
just on account of its own unreality. And, in the second 
place, a more thorough following out of the conception 
that the union with Brahman is to be reached through triie 
knowledge only, not unnaturally led to the conclusion that 
what separates us in our unenlightened state from Brahman 
is such as to allow itself to be completely sublated by an 
act of knowledge ; is, in other words, nothing else but an 
erroneous notion, an illusion. — A further circumstance which 
may not impossibly have co-operated to further the de- 
velopment of the theory of the world’s unreality will be 
referred to later on \ 


^ That section of the introduction in which the point referred to in the text 




CXXIV 


VEDANTA-S^iTRAS. 


that by their purusha they understand not the simple old 
piirusha but the Vira^ occupying a definite position in a 
highly elaborate system ; — but the mere phrase, ' providing a 
place ’intimates with sufficient clearness the nature of the work 
in which systematisers of the Vedantic doctrine are engaged. 

Sankara’s method thus enables him in a certain way to 
do justice to different stages of historical development, to 
recognise clearly existing differences which other system- 
atisers are intent on obliterating. And there has yet to 
be made a further and even more important admission in 
favour of his system. It is not only more pliable, more 
capable of amalgamating heterogeneous material than other 
systems, but its fundamental doctrines are manifestly in 
greater harmony with the essential teaching of the Upani- 
shads than those of other Vedantic systems. Above we were 
unable to allow that the distinction made by .Sankara 
between Brahman and tjvara is known to the Upanishads ; 
but we must now admit that if, for the purpose of determining 
the nature of the highest being, a choice has to be made 
between those texts which represent Brahman as nirguwa, 
and those which ascribe to it personal attributes, Sankara 
is right in giving preference to texts of the former kind. 
The Brahman of the old Upanishads, from which the souls 
spring to enjoy individual consciousness in their waking 
state, and into which they sink back temporarily in the 
state of deep dreamless sleep and permanently in death, is 
certainly not represented adequately by the strictly per- 
sonal li-vara of Ram^nn^a, who rules the world in wisdom and 
mercy. The older Upanishads, at any rate, lay very little 
stress upon personal attributes of their highest beings and 
hence 5ankara is right in so far as he assigns to his hypo- 
statised personal l.jvara^ a lower place than to his absolute 
Brahman. That he also faithfully represents the prevailing 
spirit of the Upanishads in his theory of the ultimate fate 

1 The bvara who allots to the individual souls their new forms of embodiment 
in strict accordance with their merit or demerit cannot be called anything else 
but a personal God. That this personal conscious being is at the same time iden- 
tified with the totality of the individual souls in the unconscious state of deep 
dreamless sleep, is one of those e.xtraordinary contradictions which thorough-going 
systematisers of Vedintic doctrine are apparently unable to avoid altogether. 




INTRODUCTION. 


CXXV 


of the soul, we have already remarked above. And although 
the Mayi doctrine cannot, in my opinion, be said to form 
part of the teaching of the Upanishads, it cannot yet be 
asserted to contradict it openly, because the very point 
which it is meant to elucidate, viz. the mode in which the 
physical universe and the multiplicity of individual souls 
originate, is left by the Upanishads very much in the dark. 
The later growth of the Mdyd doctrine on the basis of the 
Upanishads is therefore quite intelligible, and I fully agree 
with Mr. Gough when he says regarding it that there has 
been no addition to the system, from without but only a 
development from within, no graft but only growth. The 
lines of thought which finally led to the elaboration of the 
full-blown Maya theory may be traced with considerable 
certainty. In the first place, deepening speculation on 
Brahman tended to the notion of advaita being taken in a 
more and more strict sense, as implying not only the ex- 
clusion of any second principle external to Brahman, but 
also the absence of any elements of duality or plurality in 
the nature of the one universal being itself; a tendency 
agreeing with the spirit of a certain set of texts from the 
Upanishads. And as the fact of the appearance of a 
manifold world cannot be denied, the only way open to 
thoroughly consistent speculation was to deny at any rate 
its reality, and to call it a mere illusion due to an unreal 
principle, with which Brahman is indeed associated, but 
which is unable to break the unity of Brahman’s nature 
just on account of its own unreality. And, in the second 
place, a more thorough following out of the conception 
that the union with Brahman is to be reached through true 
knowledge only, not unnaturally led to the conclusion that 
what separates us in our unenlightened state from Brahman 
is such as to allow itself to be completely sublated by an 
act of knowledge ; is, in other words, nothing else but an 
erroneous notion, an illusion. — A further circumstance which 
may not impossibly have co-operated to further the de- 
velopment of the theory of the world’s unreality will be 
referred to later on \ 


^ That section of the introduction in which the point referred to in the text 




CXXVl 


VEDANTA-sdTRAS. 


We have above been obliged to leave it an open question 
what kind of Vedanta is represented by the Vedinta-shtras, 
although reason was shown for the supposition that in some 
important points their teaching is more closely related to 
the system of Ramanuja than to that of ^Sankara. If so, 
the philosophy of 6'ahkara would on the whole stand 
nearer to the teaching of the Upanishads than the Sutras 
of BMar4ya;^a. This would indeed be a somewhat un- 
expected conclusion — for, judging a priori, we should be 
more inclined to assume a direct propagation of the true 
doctrine of the Upanishads through Bddardya? 2 a to S’ah- 
kara — but a priori considerations have of course no weight 
against positive evidence to the contrary. There are, more- 
over, other facts in the history of Indian philosophy and 
theology which help us better to appreciate the possibility 
of Badarayawa’s Sutras already setting forth a doctrine 
that lays greater stress on the personal character of the 
highest being than is in agreement with the prevailing 
tendency of the Upanishads. That the pure doctrine of 
those ancient Brahrninical treatises underwent at a rather 
early period amalgamations with beliefs which most pro- 
bably had sprung up in altogether different — priestly or 
non-priestly — communities is a well-known circumstance ; 
it suffices for our purposes to refer to the most eminent of 
the early literary monuments in which an amalgamation of 
the kind mentioned is observable, viz. the Bhagavadgita. 
The doctrine of the Bhagavadgita represents a fusion of 
the Brahman theory of the Upanishads with the belief in 
a personal highest being — Kn'shwa or Vish/zu — which in 
many respects approximates very closely to the system of 
the Bhagavatas ; the attempts of a certain set of Indian 
commentators to explain it as setting forth pure Vedanta, 
i. e. the pure doctrine of the Upanishads, may simply 
be set aside. But this same Bhagavadgita is quoted in 
Bidaraya; 2 a’s Sutras (at least according to the unanimous 
explanations of the most eminent scholiasts of different 
schools) as inferior to 5ruti only in authority. The Shtras, 

is touched upon will I hope form part of the second volume of the translation. 
The same remark applies to a point concerning which further infornaation had 
been promised above on page v. 



INTRODUCTION. 


CXXVll 


moreover, refer in different places to certain Vedantic por- 
tions of the Mahabharata, especially the twelfth book, 
several of which represent forms of Vedanta distinctly dif- 
fering from .Sankara’s teaching, and closely related to the 
system of the Bhagavatas. 

Facts of this nature — from entering into the details of 
which we are prevented by want of space — tend to mitigate 
the prim^ facie strangeness of the assumption that the 
Veddnta-sutras, which occupy an intermediate position 
between the Upanishads and Sankara, should yet diverge 
in their teaching from both. The Vedanta of Gau<^apada 
and 6'ahkara would in that case mark a strictly orthodox 
reaction against all combinations of non-Vedic elements of 
belief and doctrine with the teaching of the Upanishads. 
But although this form of doctrine has ever since 6'ahkara’s 
time been the one most generally accepted by Brahminic 
students of philosophy, it has never had any wide-reaching 
influence on the masses of India. It is too little in sym- 
pathy with the wants of the human heart, which, after 
all, are not so very different in India from what they are 
elsewhere. Comparatively few, even in India, are those 
who rejoice in the idea of a universal non-personal essence 
in which their own individuality is to be merged and lost 
for ever, who think it sweet ‘ to be wrecked on the ocean of 
the Infinite^.’ The only forms of Vedintic philosophy 
which are — and can at any time have been — really popular, 
are those in which the Brahman of the Upanishads has 
somehow transformed itself into a being, between which and 
the devotee there can exist a personal relation, love and 
faith on the part of man, justice tempered by mercy on the 
part of the divinity. The only religious books of widespread 
influence are such as the Ramdyan of Tulsidds, which lay no 
stress on the distinction between an absolute Brahman inac- 
cessible to all human wants and sympathies, and a shadowy 
Lord whose very conception depends on the illusory prin- 
ciple of Mayl,, but love to dwell on the delights of devotion 

^ Cosi tra questa 

Immensita s’annega il pansier mi®, 

E il naufrago m’ e dolce in quest® mare. 

Leopardi. 



CXXVlll 


vedanta-sOtras. 


to one all-wise and merciful ruler, who is able and willing to 
lend a gracious ear to the supplication of the worshipper. 

The present translation of the Vedanta-sutras doth not 
aim at rendering that sense which their author may have 
aimed at conveying, but strictly follows 6'ahkara’s inter- 
pretation. The question as to how far the latter agrees 
with the views held by Badariyai^a has been discussed 
above, with the result that for the present it must, on the 
whole, be left an open one. In any case it would not be 
feasible to combine a translation of Sankara’s commentary 
with an independent version of the Sutras which it ex- 
plains. Similar considerations have determined the method 
followed in rendering the passages of the Upanishads re- 
ferred to in the Sutras and discussed at length by S'ahkara. 
There also the views of the commentator have to be followed 
closely ; otherwise much of the comment would appear de- 
void of meaning. Hence, while of course following on the 
whole the critical translation published by Professor Max 
Muller in the earlier volumes of this Series, I had, in a not 
inconsiderable number of cases, to modify it so as to render 
intelligible S'ahkara’s explanations and reasonings. I hope 
to find space in the introduction to the second volume of 
this translation for making some general remarks on the 
method to be followed in translating the Upanishads. 

I regret that want of space has prevented me from 
extracting fuller notes from later scholiasts. The notes 
given are based, most of them, on the ?ikas composed 
by Anandagiri and Govindtoanda (the former of which is 
unpublished as yet, so far as I know), and on the Bhamati. 

My best thanks are due to Pa«^fits Rama Mwra 5astrin 
and Gahgadhara Gastrin of the Benares Sanskrit College, 
whom I have consulted on several difficult passages. 
Greater still are my obligations to Yd^ndit Ke^ava .S^strin, 
of the same institution, who most kindly undertook to 
read a proof of the whole of the present volume, and 
whose advice has enabled me to render my version of more 
than one passage more definite or correct. 



vedAnta-sCjtras 

WITH 

5ANKARA BHASHYA. 


[34] B 




5ANKARA^S INTRODUCTION. 


FIRST ADHYAYA. 

FIRST pADA. 

Reverence to the August Vasudeva! 

It is a matter not requiring any proof that the object 
and the subject^ whose respective spheres are the notion of 
the ‘ Thou’ (the Non-Ego^) and the ‘Ego/ and which are 
opposed to each other as much as darkness and light are, 
cannot be identified. All the less can their respective 
attiibutcs be identified. Hence it follows that it is wrong- to 
superimpose upon the subject — whose Self is intelligence, 
and which has for its sphere the notion of the Ego— the 
object whose sphere is the notion of the Non-Ego, and the 
attributes of the object, and vice versa to superimpose the 
subject and the attributes of the subject on the object. In 
spite of this it is on the part of man a natural ^ procedure — 

1 The subject is the univetsal Self whose nature is intelligence 
(^’it) ; the object comprises whatever is of a non-intelligent nature, 
viz. bodies with their sense-organs, internal organs, and the objects 
of the senses, i.e. the external material world. 

^ The object is said to have for its sphere the notion of the ‘ thou ’ 
(yushmat), not the notion of the ' this ’ or ‘ that ' (idam), in order 
better to mark its absolute opposition to the subject or Ego. Lan- 
guage allows of the co-ordination of the pronouns of the first and 
the thiid person ('It is I,’ ‘I am he who,’ &c. j ete vayam, ime 
vayam asmahe), but not of the co-ordination of the pronouns of the 
first and second person. 

Adhyasa, literally ' superimposition ’ in the sense of (mistaken) 
asciiption or imputation, to something, of an essential nature or 
attributes not belonging to it. See later on. 

^ Natural, i.e. original, beginningless; for the modes of speech 



4 


vedanta-s'6tras. 


which has its cause in wrong knowledge — not to distinguish 
the two entities (object and subject) and their respective 
attributes, although they arc absolutely distinct, but to 
superimpose upon each the characteristic nature and the 
attributes of the other, and thus, coupling the Real and the 
Unreal^, to make use of expressions such as ‘That am I,’ 
‘That is mine".’ — But what have we to understand by the 
term ‘ superimposition ? ’ — The apparent presentation, in 
the form of remembrance, to consciousness of something 
previously observed, in some other thing 

Some indeed define the term ‘superimposition’ as the 
superimposition of the attributes of one thing on another 
thing Others, again, define superimposition as the error 


and action which characterise Iransmigiatory existence have existed, 
with the latter, fiom all eternity. 

' I.e. the intelligent Self which is the only reality and the non-real 
objects, viz. body and so on, which are the product of wrong 
knowledge. 

® ‘ The body, &c. is my Self ; ’ ‘ sickness, death, children, wealth, 
&c., belong to my Self.’ 

Literally ‘ in some other place.’ The clause ‘ in the form of 
remembrance’ is added, the Bhamatt remarks, in order to exclude 
those cases where something previously observed is recognised in 
some other thing or place; as when, for instance, the generic 
character of a cow which was previously observed in a black cow 
again presents itself to consciousness in a grey cow, or when Deva- 
datta whom we first saw in Pa/aliputra again appears before us in 
Mdhishmati. These are cases of recognition where the object pre- 
viously observed again presents itself to our senses ; while in mere 
remembrance the object previously perceived is not in renew’ed 
contact with the senses. Mere remembrance operates in the case 
of adhydsa, as when we mistake mother-of-pearl for silver which is 
at the time not present but remembered only. 

^ The so-called anyathakhyativadins maintain that in the act of 
adhyasa the attributes of one thing, silver for instance, are super- 
imposed on a different thing existing in a different place, mother- 
of-pearl for instance (if we take for our example of adhydsa the 
case of some man mistaking a piece of mother-of-pearl before him 
for a piece of silver). The dtmakhydtivddins maintain that in 
adhyasa the modification, in the form of silver, of the internal organ 


I ADHYAYA, I PADA. 


5 


founded on the non-apprehension of the difference of that 
which is superimposed from that on which it is super- 
imposedh Others^, again, define it as the fictitious as- 
sumption of attributes contrary to the nature of that thing 
on which something else is superimposed. But all these 
definitions agree in so far as they represent superimposition 
as the apparent presentation of the attributes of one thing in 
another thing. And therewith agrees also the popular view 
which is exemplified by expressions such as the following : 
‘Mother-of-pearl appears like silver,’ ‘The moon although 
one only appears as if she were double.’ But how is it 
possible that on the interior Self which itself is not an 
object there should be superimposed objects and their 
attributes? For every one superimposes an object only on 
such other objects as are placed before him (i.e. in contact 
with his sense-organs), and you have said before that the 
interior Self which is entirely disconnected from the idea of 
the Thou (the Non-Ego) is never an object. It is not, we 
reply, non-object in the absolute sense. For it is the 
object of the notion of the Ego ^ and the interior Self is 
well known to exist on account of its immediate (intuitive) 
presentation h Nor is it an exceptionless rule that objects 


is superimposed on the external thing mother-of-pearl and thus 
itself appears externa!. Both views fall under the above definition. 

^ This is the definition of the akhyativfidins. 

“^Some anyathakhyativadins and the Madhyamikas according 
to Ananda Ghi. 

The pratyagdtman is in reality non-object, for it is svayam- 
praka^a, self-luminous, i.e. the subjective factor in all cognition. 
But it becomes the object of the idea of the Ego in so far as it is 
limited, conditioned by its adjuncts which are the product of Ne- 
science, viz. the internal organ, the senses and the subtle and gross 
bodies, i.e. in so far as it is ^iva, individual or personal soul. Cp. 
Bhamati, pp, 22 , 23 : ‘ /hdatmiiva svayamprakaj-o^pi buddhyddivi- 
shayavi/(’/17mra;zat katha7;2/l’id asmatpratyayavishayoi^ haz/zkarfispada/zz 
^iva iti /(’a ^antur iti X’a kshetra^yza id /’dkhy^yate.’ 

* Translated according to the Bhamati. We deny, the objector 
says, the possibility of adhyasa in the case of the Self, not on the 
ground that it is not an object because self-luminous (for that it 




6 


A'EDANTA-S^iTRAS. 


can be superimposed only on such other objects as are 
before us, i. e. in contact with our sense-organs ; for non- 
discerning men superimpose on the ether, which is not the 
object of sensuous perception, dark-blue colour. 

Hence it follows that the assumption of the Non-Self 
being superimposed on the interior Self is not unreasonable. 

This superimposition thus defined, learned men consider 
to be Nescience (avidya), and the ascertainment of the true 
nature of that which is (the Self) by means of the discrimi- 
nation of that (which is superimposed on the Self), they 
call knowledge (vidya). There being such knowledge 
(neither the Self nor the Non-Self) are affected in the least 
by any blemish or (good) quality produced by their mutual 
superimposition k The mutual superimposition of the Self 
and the Non-Self, which is termed Nescience, is the pre- 
supposition on which there base all the practical distinc- 
tions — those made in ordinary life as well as those laid 
down by the Veda — between means of knowledge, objects 
of knowledge (and knowing persons), and all scriptural 
texts, whether they are concerned with injunctions and 
prohibitions (of meritorious and non-meritorious actions), 
or with final release^. — But how can the means of right 


may be an object although it is self-luminous you have shown), 
but on the ground that it is not an object because it is not mani- 
fested either by itself or by anything else. — It is known or mani- 
fest, the Vedantin replies, on account of its immediate presentation 
(aparokshatvat), i.e. on account of the intuitional knowledge we 
have of it. Ananda Giri construes the above clause in a different 
way: asmatpratyayavishayatve py aparokshatvad ekantenavishaya- 
tvabbavat tasminn ahahk^radyadhyasa ity artha/^. Aparokshatvam 
api kah-iid atmano nesh/am ity ajarikyaha pratyagatmeti. 

^ Tatraiva;;z satievambhutavastutattvavadhara;/e sati. Bha. Tas- 
minn adhyase uktarityds^vidyavmake sati. Go. Yatratmani bud- 
dhy^dau va yasya buddhyader dtmano v^dhyasa// tena buddhyadi- 
nastmani. va kr/tena^^i janayadidoshe;;a A’aitanyagu^/ena /’atmanatma 
va vastuto na svalpenapi yug'yate. Ananda Giri. 

® Whether they belong to the karmaka?i^/a, i. e. that part of the 
Veda which enjoins active religious duty or the ^//anakaz/ffa, i.e. 
that part of the Veda which treats of Brahman. 



I ADHYAYA, I PAD A. 


7 


knowledge such as perception, inference, &c., and scrip- 
tural texts have for their object that which is dependent 
on Nescience ^ ? — Because, we reply, the means of right 
knowledge cannot operate unless there be a knowing per- 
sonality, and because the existence of the latter depends 
on the erroneous notion that the body, the senses, and so 
on, are identical with, or belong to, the Self of the knowing 
person. For without the employment of the senses, per- 
ception and the other means of right knowledge cannot 
operate. And without a basis (i.e. the body the senses 
cannot act. Nor does anybody act by means of a body 
on which the nature of the Self is not superimposed 
Nor can, in the absence of all that^, the Self which, in its 
own nature is free from all contact, become a knowing 
agent. And if there is no knowing agent, the means of 
right knowledge cannot operate (as said above). Hence 
perception and the other means of right knowledge, and 
the Vedic texts have for their object that which is de- 
pendent on Nescience. (That human cognitional activity 
has for its presupposition the superimposition described 
above), follows also from the non-difference in that respect 
of men from animals. Animals, when sounds or other 
sensible qualities affect their sense of hearing or other 
senses, recede or advance according as the idea derived 
from the sensation is a comforting or disquieting one, A 
cow, for instance, when she sees a man approaching with a 
raised stick in his hand, thinks that he wants to beat her, and 
therefore moves away ; while she walks up to a man who 
advances with some fresh grass in his hand. Thus men 
also — who possess a higher intelligence — run away when 

^ It being of course the function of the means of right know- 
ledge to determine Truth and Reality. 

^ The Bhdmati takes adhish/Mnam in the sense of superintend- 
ence, guidance. The senses cannot act unless guided by a super- 
intending principle, i. e. the individual soul. 

^ If activity could proceed from the body itself, non-identified 
with the Self, it would take place in deep sleep also. 

^ I.e. in the absence of the mutual superimposition of the Self 
and the Non-Self and their attributes. 



8 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


they see strong fierce-looking fellows drawing near with 
shouts and brandishing swords ; while they confidently 
approach persons of contrary appearance and behaviour. 
Wc thus see that men and animals follow the same course 
of procedure with reference to the means and objects of 
knowledge. Now it is well known that the procedure of 
animals bases on the non-distinction (of Self and Non- 
Selfj ; we therefore conclude that^ as they present the 
same appearances, men also — although distinguished by 
superior intelligence — proceed with regard to perception 
and so on, in the same way as animals do ; as long, that 
is to say, as the mutual superimposition of Self and Non- 
Self lasts. With reference again to that kind of activity 
which is founded on the Veda (sacrifices and the like), it is 
true indeed that the reflecting man who is qualified to enter 
on it, does so not without knowing that the Self has a 
relation to another world ; yet that qualification does not 
depend on the knowledge, derivable from the Vedanta- 
texts, of the true nature of the Self as free from all wants, 
raised above the distinctions of the Brahma^^a and Kshat- 
triya-classes and so on, transcending transmigratory exis- 
tence. For such knowledge is useless and even contra- 
dictory to the claim (on the part of sacrificers, &c. to 
perform certain actions and enjoy their fruits). And before 
such knowledge of the Self has arisen, the Vedic texts 
continue in their operation, to have for their object that 
which is dependent on Nescience. For such texts as 
’the following, ‘A Brahma;/a is to sacrifice,’ are operative 
only on the supposition that on the Self are superimposed 
particular conditions such as caste, stage of life, age, out- 
ward circumstances, and so on. That by superimposition 
we have to understand the notion of something in some 
other thing we have already explained. (The superimpo- 
sition of the Non-Self will be understood more definitely 
from the following examples.) Extra-personal attributes 
are superimposed on the Self, if a man considers himself 
sound and entire, or the contrary, as long as his wife, 
children, and so on are sound and entire or not. Attri- 
butes of the body are superimposed on the Self, if a man 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, I. 


9 


thinks of himself (his Self) as stout, lean, fair, as standing, 
walking, or jumping. Attributes of the sense-organs, if 
he thinks ‘ I am mute, or deaf, or one-eyed, or blind.’ 
Attributes of the internal organ when he considers himself 
subject to desire, intention, doubt, determination, and so 
on. Thus the producer of the notion of the Ego (i.e. the 
internal organ) is superimposed on the interior Self, which, 
in reality, is the witness of all the modifications of the 
internal organ, and vice versa the interior Self, which is 
the witness of everything, is superimposed on the internal 
organ, the senses, and so on. In this way there goes on 
this natural beginning — and endless superimposition, which 
appears in the form of wrong conception, is the cause of 
individual souls appearing as agents and enjoy ers (of the 
results of their actions), and is observed by every one. 

With a view to freeing one’s self from that wrong notion 
which is the cause of all evil and attaining thereby the 
knowledge of the absolute unity of the Self the study of 
the Veddnta-texts is begun. That all the Vedanta-texts 
have the mentioned purport we shall show in this so-called 
5ariraka-mimaw2sa h 

Of this Veddnta-mima7;2si about to be explained by us 
the first Sutra is as follows. 

I. Then therefore the enquiry into Brahman. 

The word ‘ then ’ is here to be taken as denoting imme- 
diate consecution ; not as indicating the introduction of a 
new subject to be entered upon ; for the enquiry into 
Brahman (more literally, the desire of knowing Brahman) 
is not of that nature Nor has the word ‘ then ’ the sense 


^ The Mtma7;2sa, i.e. the enquiry whose aim it is to show that 
the embodied Self, i.e. the individual or personal soul is one with 
Brahman. This Mima7;2sa being an enquiry into the meaning of the 
Vedanta-portions of the Veda, it is also called Vedanta-niima7;2S^. 

^ Mdhikarartha iti. Tatra hetur brahmeti. Asyartha.^, kirn 
ayam atha^abdo brahma^;7an.eZ’.^j^ayai^ kiw vantawiitaviXurasya 
athave/’/f’/^ivijesha72a^;7anasyarambhartha/^. Nidya/i tasya mi m a??/- 
sapravartikayas tadapravartyatvad andrabhyatvat tasj4^ /’ottaratra 


10 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


of aiispiciousncss (or blessing) ; for a word of that meaning 
could not be properly construed as a part of the sentence. 
The word ‘ then ' rather acts as an auspicious term by 
being pronounced and heard merely, while it denotes at 
the same time something else, viz. immediate consecution as 
said above. That the latter is its meaning follows more- 
over from the circumstance that the relation in which the 
result stands to the previous topic (viewed as the cause of 
the result) is non-separate from the relation of immediate 
consecution h 

If, then, the word ‘ then ’ intimates immediate consecution 
it must be explained on what antecedent the enquiry into 
Brahman specially depends ; just as the enquiry into active 
religious duty (which forms the subject of the Purva 
Mimi;«sa) specially depends on the antecedent reading of 
the Veda. The reading of the Veda indeed is the common 
antecedent (for those who wish to enter on an enquiry into 
religious duty as well as for those desirous of knowing 
Brahman). The special question with regard to the enquiry 
into Brahman is whether it presupposes as its antecedent 
the understanding of the acts of religious duty (which is 
acquired by means of the Purva Mima7;/si). To this 
question we reply in the negative, because for a man who 
has read the Vedanta-parts of the Veda it is possible to 
enter on the enquiry into Brahman even before engaging in 
the enquiry into religious duty. Nor is it the purport of 
the word ‘ then ’ to indicate order of succession ; a purport 
which it serves in other passages, as, for instance, in the one 
enjoining the cutting off of pieces from the heart and other 


pralyadhikarawam apratipadanat. Na dvitiyo^thajabdendnantar- 
yoktidvard vijish/ddhikaryasamarpa;?e sddhanaX’atush/aydsampan- 
nina?« brahmadhitadviX’arayor anarthitvad vU’aranarambhan na /’a 
viMravidhiva^ad adhikari kalpya.^ prarambhasyapi tulyatvdd adhi- 
kari7;a.r liz. vidhyapekshitopadhitv^n na X.ri'^ydJi brahma^7?anasya- 
nandasdkshatkaratvenadhikaryatve x pyapradhanyad atha^abdasam- 
bandhat tasman narambharthateti. Ananda Giri. 

^ Any relation in which the result, i. e. here the enquiry into 
Brahman may stand to some antecedent of which it is the effect 
may be comprised under the relation of anantarya. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, I. 


1 I 


parts of the sacrificial animal (For the intimation of order 
of succession could be intended only if the agent in both 
cases were the same ; but this is not the case), because 
there is no proof for assuming the enquiry into religious 
duty and the enquiry into Brahman to stand in the rela- 
tion of principal and subordinate matter or the relation of 
qualification (for a certain act) on the part of the person 
qualified ^ j and because the result as well as the object 
of the enquiry differs in the two cases. The knowledge of 
active leligious duty has for its fruit transitory felicity, and 
that again depends on the performance of religious acts. 
The enquiry into Brahman, on the other hand, has for its 
fiuit eteinal bliss, and does not depend on the performance 
of any acts. Acts of religious duty do not yet exist at the 
time when they are enquired into, but are something to 
be accomplished (in the future) ; for they depend on the 
activity of man. In the Brahma-mim£i?;zsa, on the other 
hand, the object of enquiry, i.e. Brahman, is something 
already accomplished (existent), — for it is eternal, — and 
does not depend on human energy. The two enquiries 
diffei moieover in so far as the operation of their respective 
fundamental texts is concerned. For the fundamental texts 
on which active religious duty depends convey information 
to man in so far only as they enjoin on him their own 
particular subjects (sacrifices, &c.) ; while the fundamental 
texts about Brahman merely instruct man, without lay- 
ing on him the injunction of being instructed, instruction 
being theii immediate result. The case is analogous to 
that of the information regarding objects of sense which 
ensues as soon as the objects are approximated to the 
senses. It therefore is requ isite that something should be 

He cuts off from the heart, then from the tongue, then from 
the breast. 

J Where one action is subordinate to another as, for instance, the 
0 eiing of the praya^ms is to the darjapiavzamasa-sacrifice, or where 
one action qualifies a person for another as, for instance, the offering 
of the darjapfir^/amfisa qualifies a man for the performance of the 
onm-sacnfice, there is unity of the agent, and consequently an inti- 
mation of the order of succession of the actions is in its right place 



12 


vedanta-sOtras. 


stated subsequent to which the enquiry into Brahman is pro- 
posed. — Well, then, we maintain that the antecedent condi- 
tions are the discrimination of what is eternal and what is 
non-eternal ; the renunciation of all desire to enjoy the fruit 
(of one’s actions) both here and hereafter ; the acquirement 
of tranquillity, self-restraint, and the other means and the 
desire of final release. If these conditions exist, a man 
may, either before entering on an enquiry into active 
religious duty or after that, engage in the enquiry into 
Brahman and come to know it ; but not otherwise. The 
word ‘ then ’ therefore intimates that the enquiry into 
Brahman is subsequent to the acquisition of the above- 
mentioned (spiritual) means. 

The word ‘ therefore ’ intimates a reason. Because the 
Veda, while declaring that the fruit of the agnihotra and 
similar performances which are means of happiness is non- 
cternal (as, for instance, Kh. Up. VIII, i, 5 , ‘ As here on earth 
whatever has been acquired by action perishes so perishes 
in the next world whatever is acquired by acts of religious 
duty’), teaches at the same time that the highest aim of man is 
realised by the knowledge of Brahman (as, for instance, Taitt. 
Up. II, 1, ‘ He who knows Brahman attains the highest ’) ; 
therefore the enquiry into Brahman is to be undertaken 
subsequently to the acquirement of the mentioned means. 

By Brahman is to be understood that the definition of 
which will be given in the next Sutra (I, i, 2) ; it is therefore 
not to be supposed that the word Brahman may here denote 
something else, as, for instance, the brahminical caste. In the 
Sutra the genitive case (• of Brahman ; ’ the literal translation 
of the Sutra being ' then therefore the desire of knowledge 
of Brahman ’) denotes the object, not something generally 
supplementary (j'esha -) ; for the desire of knowledge 

^ The ‘ means ’ in addition to jama and^dama are discontinuance 
of religious ceremonies (uparati), patience in suffering (titikshd), 
attention and concentration of the mind (samtdh^na), and faith 
(jraddhd). 

“ According to PdHni II, 3, 50 the sixth (genitive) case ex- 
presses the relation of one thing being generally supplementary 
to, or connected with, some other thing. 




I adhyAya, I .pAda, I. 


I 


O 


demands an object of desire and no other such object is 
stated. — But why should not the genitive case be taken as 
expressing the general complementary relation (to express 
which is its proper office) ? Even in that case it might 
constitute the object of the desire of knowledge, since the 
general relation may base itself on the more particular 
one. — This assumption, we reply, would mean that we 
refuse to take Brahman as the direct object, and then again 
indirectly introduce it as the object; an altogether needless 
procedure. — Not needless ; for if we explain the words of 
the Sutra to mean ' the desire of knowledge connected with 
Brahman’ we thereby virtually promise that also all the 
heads of discussion which bear on Brahman will be treated. — 
This reason also, we reply, is not strong enough to uphold 
your interpretation. For the statement of some principal 
matter already implies all the secondary matters connected 
therewith. Hence if Brahman, the most eminent of all 
objects of knowledge, is mentioned, this implies already all 
those objects of enquiry which the enquiry into Brahman 
presupposes, and those objects need therefore not be men- 
tioned, especially in the Sutra. Analogously the sentence 
‘there the king is going’ implicitly means that the king 
together with his retinue is going there. Our interpretation 
(according to which the Sutra represents Brahman as the 
direct object of knowledge) moreover agrees with Scripture, 
which directly represents Brahman as the object of the 
desire of knowledge ; compare, for instance, the passage, 
‘ That from whence these beings are born, &c., desire to 
know that. That is Brahman’ (Taitt. Up. Ill, i). With 
passages of this kind the Sutra only agrees if the genitive 
case is taken to denote the object. Hence we do take it 
in that sense. The object of the desire is the knowledge of 
Brahman up to its complete comprehension, desires having 
reference to results k Knowledge thus constitutes the 

^ In the case of other transitive verbs, object and result may be 
separate ; so, for instance, when it is said ‘ gmma/M the 

village is the object of the action of going, and the arrival at the 
village its result. But in the case of verbs of desiring object and 
result coincide. 




14 VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


means by which the complete comprehension of Brahman 
is desired to be obtained. For the complete comprehension 
of Brahman is the highest end of man, since it destroys the 
root of all evil such as Nescience, the seed of the entire 
Sa;«sara. Hence the desire of knowing Brahman is to be 
entertained. 

But, it may be asked, is Brahman known or not known 
(previously to the enquiry into its nature) ? If it is known 
we need not enter on an enquiry concerning it; if it is 
not known we can not enter on such an enquiry. 

We reply that Brahman is known. Brahman, which is 
all-knowing and endowed with all powers, whose essential 
nature is eternal purity, intelligence, and freedom, exists. 
For if we consider the derivation of the word ‘ Brahman,’ 
from the root hrzh, ‘ to be great,’ we at once understand 
that eternal purity, and so on, belong to Brahman \ More- 
over the existence of Brahman is known on the ground of 
its being the Self of every one. For every one is conscious 
of the existence of (his) Self, and never thinks ' I am not.’ 
If the existence of the Self were not known, every one 
would think ‘ I am not.’ And this Self (of whose existence 
all are conscious) is Brahman. But if Brahman is generally 
known as the Self, there is no room for an enquiry into it ! 
Not so, we reply ; for there is a conflict of opinions as to its 
special nature. Unlearned people and the Lokdyatikas 
are of opinion that the mere body endowed with the quality 
of intelligence is the Self ; others that the organs endowed 
with intelligence are the Self ; others maintain that the inter- 
nal organ is the Self ; others, again, that the Self is a mere 
momentary idea ; others, again, that it is the Void. Others, 
again (to proceed to the opinion of such as acknowledge 
the authority of the Veda), maintain that there is a trans- 
migrating being different from the body, and so on, which is 
both agent and enjoyer (of the fruits of action) ; others teach 


* That Brahman exists we know, even before entering on the 
Brahma-mtmt?/zsa, from the occurrence of the word in the Veda, &c., 
and from the etymology of the word we at once infer Brahman’s 
chief attributes. 



I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 2, 


15 


that that being is enjoying only, not acting ; others believe 
that in addition to the individual souls, there is an all- 
knowing, all-powerful Lord Others, finally, (i. e» the 
Vedantins) maintain that the Lord is the Self of the en- 
joyer (i.e. of the individual soul whose individual existence 
is apparent only, the product of Nescience). 

Thus there are many various opinions, basing part 
of them on sound arguments and scriptural texts, part of 
them on fallacious arguments and scriptural texts mis- 
understood If therefore a man would embrace some one 
of these opinions without previous consideration, he would 
bar himself from the highest beatitude and incur grievous 
loss. For this reason the first Sutra proposes, under the 
designation of an enquiry into Brahman, a disquisition of 
the Vedanta-texts, to be carried on with the help of con- 
formable arguments, and having for its aim the highest 
beatitude. 

So far it has been said that Brahman is to be enquired 
into. The question now arises what the characteristics of 
that Brahman are, and the reverend author of the SCitras 
therefore propounds the following aphorism. 


2. (Brahman is that) from which the origin, &c. 
(i.e. the origin, subsistence, and dissolution) of this 
(world proceed). 

The term, &c. implies subsistence and re-absorption. 
That the origin is mentioned first (of the three) depends 
on the declaration of Scripture as well as on the natural 
development of a substance. Scripture declares the order 


^ The three last opinions are those of the followers of the 
Nyaya, the Sahkhya, and the Yoga-philosophy respectively. The 
three opinions mentioned first belong to various materialistic 
schools ; the two subsequent ones to two sects of Bauddha philo- 
sophers. 

® As, for instance, the passages ‘ this person consists of the 
essence of food ; ’ ‘the eye, &c. spoke ; ’ ‘ non-existing this was in 
the beginning,’ &c. 


i6 


vedanta-sOtras. 


of succession of origin, subsistence, and dissolution in the 
passage, Taitt. Up. Ill, i, ‘From whence these beings are 
born,’ &c. And with regard to the second reason stated, it 
is known that a substrate of qualities can subsist and be 
dissolved only after it has entered, through origination, 
on the state of existence. The words ‘of this’ denote 
that substrate of qualities which is presented to us by 
perception and the other means of right knowledge ; the 
genitive case indicates it to be connected with origin, 
&c. The words ‘ from which ’ denote the cause. The full 
sense of the Siatra therefore is : That omniscient omnipotent 
cause from which proceed the origin, subsistence, and dissolu- 
tion of this world — which world is differentiated by names 
and forms, contains many agents and enjoyers, is the abode 
of the fruits of actions, these fruits having their definite 
places, times, and causes \ and the nature of whose arrange- 
ment cannot even be conceived by the mind, — that cause, 
we say, is Brahman. Since the other forms of existence 
(such as increase, decline, &c.) are included in origination, 
subsistence, and dissolution, only the three latter arc referred 
to in the Sutra. As the six stages of existence enumerated 
by Yaska ^ are possible only during the period of the 
world’s subsistence, it might — were they referred to in the 
Sfitra — be suspected that what is meant are not the origin, 
subsistence, and dissolution (of the world) as dependent on 
the first cause. To preclude this suspicion the Sutra is to 
be taken as referring, in addition to the world’s origination 
from Brahman, only to its subsistence in Brahman, and 
final dissolution into Brahman. 

The origin, &c. of a world possessing the attributes 
stated above cannot possibly proceed from anything else 
but a Lord possessing the stated qualities ; not either from 
a non-intelligent prddhana or from atoms, or from non- 

^ So the compound is to be divided according to An. Gi. and 
Go. ; the BhI. proposes another less plausible division. 

^ According to Nirukta I, 2 the six bhavaviktra/^ are : origina- 
tion, existence, modification, increase, decrease, destruction. 

^ The pradhtna, called also prakrdi, is the primal causal matter 
of the world in the Sankhya-system. It will be fully discussed in 



I ADIIYAVA, I PADA, 2. 


17 


being, or from a being subject to transmigration ‘ ; nor, 
again, can it, proceed from its own nature (i.e. spontaneously, 
without a cause), since we observe that (for the production 
of effects) special places, times, and causes have invariably 
to be employed. 

(Some of) those who maintain a Lord to be the cause 
of the world think that the existence of a Lord different 
from mere transmigrating beings can be inferred by 
means of the argument stated just now (without re- 
course being had to Scripture at all). — But, it might 
be said, you yourself in the Sutra under discussion have 
merely brought forward the same argument ! — By no 
means, we reply. The Sutras (i.e. literally ' the strings ’) 
have merely the purpose of stringing together the flowers 
of the Ved^nta-passages. In reality the Vedanta-passages 
referred to by the Sutras are discussed here. For the 
comprehension of Brahman is effected by the ascertain- 
ment, consequent on discussion, of the sense of the Vedanta- 
texts, not either by inference or by the other means of 
right knowledge. While, however, the Vedanta-passages 
primarily declare the cause of the origin, &c., of the world, 
inference also, being an instrument of right knowledge in 
so far as it does not contradict the Vedanta-texts, is not to 
be excluded as a means of confirming the meaning ascer- 
tained. Scripture itself, moreover, allows argumentation; 
for the passages, Bn. Up. II, 4, 5 (‘the Self is to be heard, 
to be considered’), and Kh, Up. VI, 14, 2 (‘as the man, 
&c., having been informed, and being able to judge for 
himself, would arrive at Gandhara, in the same way a man 
who meets with a teacher obtains knowledge ’), declare 
that human understanding assists Scripture 

Scriptural text, &c.^, are not, in the enquiry into Brahman, 

later parts of this work. To avoid ambiguities, the term pradhana 
has been left untranslated. Cp. Sahkhya Karild 3. 

^ Ke/l’it tu^hira//yagarbha?;^ sa/'«stiri//am evSgama^ ^-"agaddhetum 
ad’akshate. Ananda Giri. 

^ Viz. the Vaijeshikas. 

Atmanay^ .yruter ity artha/z. Ananda Giri. 

^ Text (or direct statement), suggestive power (linga), syntacticr.1 
C34] C 


vedanta-sOtkas. 


i8 


the only means of knowledgCj as they are in the enquiry 
into active duty (i.e. in the Purva Mimawsa), but scriptural 
texts on the one hand, and intuition 8z:c., on the othei 
hand, are to be had recourse to according to the occasion : 
firstly, because intuition is the final result of the enquiry 
into Brahman ; secondly, because the object of the enquiry 
is an existing (accomplished) substance. If the object of 
the knowledge of Brahman were something to be accom- 
plished, there would be no reference to intuition, and text, 
&C.J would be the only means of knowledge. The origina- 
tion of something to be accomplished depends, moreover, 
on man since any action either of ordinary life, or dependent 
on the Veda may either be done or not be done, or be done 
in a different way. A man, for instance, may move on either 
by means of a horse, or by means of his feet, or by some 
other means, or not at all. And again (to quote examples 
of actions dependent on the Veda), we meet in Scripture 
with sentences such as the following : ‘ At the atiratra he 
takes the shoffarin cup,’ and ‘ at the atiratra he does not 
take the shoffaffn cup ; ’ or, ‘ he makes the oblation after 
the sun has risen,’ and, ‘he makes the oblation when the 
sun has not yet risen.’ Just as in the quoted instances, 
injunctions and prohibitions, allowances of optional pro- 
cedure, general rules and exceptions have their place, so 
they would have their place with regard to Brahman also 
(if the latter were a thing to be accomplished). But the 
fact is that no option is possible as to whether a substance 
is to be thus or thus, is to be or not to be. All option 
depends on the notions of man ; but the knowledge of the 
real nature of a thing does not depend on the notions of 
man, but only on the thing itself. For to think with 
regard to a post, ‘ this is a post or a man, or something 
else,’ is not knowledge of truth ; the two ideas, ‘ it is a man 
or something else,’ being false, and only the third idea, ‘ it 


connection (vakya), &c., being the means of proof made use of in 
the Purva Mimawsa. 

^ The so-called sakshatkara of Brahman. The &:c. comprises 
inference and so on. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 3. 


19 


is a post,’ which depends on the thing itself, falling' under 
the head of true knowledge. Thus true knowledge of all 
existing things depends on the things themselves, and 
hence the knowledge of Brahman also depends altogether 
on the thing, i.e. Brahman itself. — But, it might be said, 
as Brahman is an existing substance, it will be the object 
of the other means of right knowledge also, and from this 
it follows that a discussion of the Vedanta-texts is purpose- 
less. — This we deny ; for as Brahman is not an object of 
the senses, it has no connection with those other means of 
knowledge. For the senses have, according to their nature, 
only external things for their objects, not Brahman. If 
Brahman were an object of the senses, we might perceive 
that the world is connected with Brahman as its effect ; 
but as the effect only (i.e. the world) is perceived, it is 
impossible to decide (through perception) whether it is 
connected with Brahman or something else. Therefore 
the Shtra under discussion is not meant to propound in- 
ference (as the means of knowing Brahman), but rather to 
set forth a Vedanta-text. — Which, then, is the Vedinta-text 
which the Sutra points at as having to be considered with 
reference to the characteristics of Brahman? — It is the 
passage Taitt. Up. Ill, i, ‘ BhWgu Varum went to his father 
Varu;^a, saying, Sir, teach me Brahman/ &c., up to ‘ That 
from whence these beings are born, that by which, when 
born, they live, that into which they enter at their death, 
try to know that. That is Brahman,’ The sentence finally 
determining the sense of this passage is found III, 6 : ‘ From 
bliss these beings are born ; by bliss, when born, they live ; 
into bliss they enter at their death.’ Other passages also 
are to be adduced which declare the cause to be the almighty 
Being, whose essential nature is eternal purity, intelligence, 
and freedom. 

That Brahman is omniscient we have been made to infer 
from it being shown that it is the cause of the world. To 
confirm this conclusion, the Sutrakara continues as follows : 

3. (The omniscience of Brahman follows) from its 
being the source of Scripture. 

c 2 



20 


VEDANTA-sflTKAS. 


Brahman is the source, i.e. the cause of the great body 
of Scripture, consisting of the i?zg-veda and other branches, 
which is supported b})^ various disciplines (such as grammar, 
nyaya, pura/^a, &c.) ; which lamp-like illuminates all things ; 
which is itself all-knowing as it were. For the origin of a 
body of Scripture possessing the quality of omniscience can- 
not be sought elsewhere but in omniscience itself. It is 
generally understood that the man from whom some special 
body of doctrine referring to one province of knowledge only 
originates, as, for instance, grammar from Pa 72 ini possesses 
a more extensive knowledge than his work, comprehensive 
though it be; what idea, then, shall we have to form of the 
supreme omniscience and omnipotence of that great Being, 
which in sport as it were, easily as a man sends forth his 
breath, has produced the vast mass of holy texts known as the 
i?fg-vcda, &c., the mine of all knowledge, consisting of mani- 
fold branches, the cause of the distinction of all the different 
classes and conditions of gods, animals, and men ! See what 
Scripture says about him, ‘The 7 ffg-veda, &c,, have been 
breathed forth from that great Being ’ (Br/. Up. II, 4, 10). 

Or else we may interpret the Sutra to mean that Scripture 
consisting of the ivhg-veda, &c., as described above, is the 
source or cause, i.e. the means of right knowledge through 
which we understand the nature of Brahman. So that the 
sense would be : through Scripture only as a means of know- 
ledge Brahman is known to be the cause of the origin, &c., 
of the W'orld. The special scriptural passage meant has been 
quoted under the preceding Sutra ‘ from which these beings 
are born,’ &c. — But as the preceding Sutra already has pointed 
out a text showing that Scripture is the source of Brahman, 
of what use then is the present Sutra ? — The words of the pre- 
ceding Sutra, we reply, did not clearly indicate the scriptural 
passage, and room was thus left for the suspicion that the 
origin, SiC., of the world were adduced merely as determining 
an inference (independent of Scripture). To obviate this 
suspicion the Sutra under discussion has been propounded. 

But, again, how can it be said that Scripture is the means 
of knowing Brahman? Since it has been declared that 
Scripture aims at action (according to the Purva Mimawsa 



Sutra I, 3, I, ‘ As the purport of Scripture is action, those 
scriptural passages whose purport is not action are purport- 
less’), the Vedanta-passages whose purport is not action 
are purportless. Or else if they are to have some sense, 
they must either, by manifesting the agent, the divinity or 
the fruit of the action, form supplements to the passages en- 
joining actions, or serve the purpose of themselves enjoining 
a new class of actions, such as devout meditation and the like. 
For the Veda cannot possibly aim at conveying information 
regarding the nature of accomplished substances, since the 
latter are the objects of perception and the other means of 
proof (which give sufficient information about them ; while 
it is the recognised object of the Veda to give information 
about what is not known from other sources). And if it 
did give such information, it would not be connected with 
things to be desired or shunned, and thus be of no use to 
man. For this very reason Vedic passages, such as ‘ he 
howled, &c.,’ which at first sight appear purposeless, are 
shown to have a purpose in so far as they glorify certain 
actions (cp. Pu. Mi. Su. I, 2, 7, ‘ Because they stand in syntac- 
tical connection with the injunctions, therefore their purport 
is to glorify the injunctions ’). In the same way mantras are 
shown to stand in a certain relation to actions, in so far as 
they notify the actions themselves and the means by which 
they are accomplished. So, for instance, the mantra, ‘ For 
strength thee (I cut ; ’ which accompanies the cutting of a 
branch employed in the daiwapurwamasa-sacrifice). In 
short, no Vedic passage is seen or can be proved to have 
a meaning but in so far as it is related to an action. And 
injunctions which are defined as having actions for their 
objects cannot refer to accomplished existent things. 
Hence we maintain that the Vedanta-texts are mere 
supplements to those passages which enjoin actions ; noti- 
fying the agents, divinities, and results connected with 
those actions. Or else, if this be not admitted, on the 
ground of its involving the introduction of a subject-matter 
foreign to the Vedanta-texts (viz. the subject-matter of 
the Karmakd^/^/a of the Veda), we must admit (the second 
of the two alternatives proposed above viz.) that the 



22 


vedAnta-sutras, 


Vedanta-texts refer to devout meditation (updsana) and 
similar actions which are mentioned in those very (Vedanta) 
texts. The result of all of which is that Scripture is not 
the source of Brahman. 

To this argumentation the SutraMra replies as follows : 

4. But that (Brahman is to be known from Scrip- 
ture), because it is connected (with the Vedanta-texts) 
as their purport. 

The word ‘ but ’ is meant to rebut the piirva-paksha (the 
prim a facie view as urged above). That all-knowing, all- 
powerful Brahman, which is the cause of the origin, sub- 
sistence, and dissolution of the world, is known from the 
Vedanta-part of Scripture. How ? Because in all the 
Vedanta-texts the sentences construe in so far as they 
have for their purport, as they intimate that matter (viz. 
Brahman). Compare, for instance, ‘Being only this was in 
the beginning, one, without a second’ {Kh. Up. VI, s, i); 

‘ In the beginning all this was Self, one only ’ (Ait. Ar. II, 4, 
I, i) ; ‘This is the Brahman without cause and without 
effect, without anything inside or outside ; this Self is 
Brahman perceiving everything’ (Bn. Up. II, 5, 19); ‘That 
immortal Brahman is before’ (Mu. Up. II, 2, ii); and 
similar passages. If the words contained in these passages 
have once been determined to refer to Brahman, and their 
purport is understood thereby, it would be improper to 
assume them to have a different sense ; for that would 
involve the fault of abandoning the direct statements of 
the text in favour of mere assumptions. Nor can we con- 
clude the purport of these passages to be the intimation 
of the nature of agents, divinities, Sic, (connected with acts 
of religious duty); for there are certain scriptural passages 
which preclude all actions, actors, and fruits, as, for instance, 
Brz. Up. II, 4, 13, ‘Then by what should he see whom?’ 
(which passage intimates that there is neither an agent, nor 
an object of action, nor an instrument.) Nor again can 
Brahman, though it is of the nature of an accomplished 
thing, be the object of perception and the other means of 



I adiiyAya, I pAda, 4. 


23 


knowledge; for the fact of everything having its Self in 
Brahman cannot be grasped without the aid of the scriptural 
passage ‘That art thou’ {Kh. Up. VI, 8, 7). Nor can it 
rightly be objected that instruction is purportless if not 
connected with something either to be striven after or 
shunned ; for from the mere comprehension of Brahman’s 
Self, which is not something either to be avoided or 
endeavoured after, there results cessation of all pain, and 
thereby the attainment of man’s highest aim. That 
passages notifying certain divinities, and so on, stand in 
subordinate relation to acts of devout meditation mentioned 
in the same chapters may readily be admitted. But it is 
impossible that Brahman should stand in an analogous 
relation to injunctions of devout meditation, for if the know- 
ledge of absolute unity has once arisen there exists no 
longer anything to be desired or avoided, and thereby the 
conception of duality, according to which we distinguish 
actions, agents, and the like, is destroyed. If the conception 
of duality is once uprooted by the conception of absolute 
unity, it cannot arise again, and so no longer be the cause 
of Brahman being looked upon as the complementary 
object of injunctions of devotion. Other parts of the Veda 
may have no authority except in so far as they are con- 
nected with injunctions ; still it is impossible to impugn on 
that ground the authoritativeness of passages conveying 
the knowledge of the Self; for such passages have their 
own result. Nor, finally, can the authoritativeness of the 
Veda be proved by inferential reasoning so that it would 
be dependent on instances observed elsewhere. From all 
which it follows that the Veda possesses authority as a 
means of right knowledge of Brahman. 

Here others raise the following objection : — Although the 
Veda is the means of gaining a right knowledge of Brah- 
man, yet it intimates Brahman only as the object of certain 
injunctions, just as the information which the Veda gives 
about the sacrificial post, the ahavaniya-fire and other 
objects not known from the practice of common life is 
merely supplementary to certain injunctions h Why so? 

^ So, for instance, the passage ‘he caives the sacrificial post and 



24 


vedanta-sOtras, 


Because the Veda has the purport of either instigating to 
action or restraining from it. For men fully acquainted 
with the object of the Veda have made the following 
declaration, 'The purpose of the Veda is seen to be the 
injunction of actions ’ (Bhashya on Caimini Sutra I, i, i) ; 
'Injunction means passages impelling to action’ (Bh. on 
GdAm . Su. I, I, 3); 'Of this (viz. active religious duty) the 
knowledge comes from injunction ’ (part of Cairn. Su. I, i, 5) ; 
‘ The (words) denoting those (things) are to be connected 
with (the injunctive verb of the vidhi-passage) whose pur- 
port is action ’ (Caim. Su. I, i, 25) ; ‘ As action is the purport 
of the Veda, whatever does not refer to action is purport- 
less ’ (Cairn. Su. I, 2, 3). Therefore the Veda has a purport 
in so far only as it rouses the activity of man with regard 
to some actions and restrains it with regard to others ; 
other passages (i.e. all those passages which are not directly 
injunctive) have a purport only in so far as they supplement 
injunctions and prohibitions. Hence the Ved^nta-texts 
also as likewise belonging to the Veda can have a mean- 
ing in the same way only. And if their aim is injunc- 
tion, then just as the agnihotra-oblation and other rites 
arc enjoined as means for him who is desirous of the 
heavenly world, so the knowledge of Brahman is enjoined 
as a means for him who is desirous of immortality. — But — 
somebody might object — it has been declared that there is 
a difference in the character of the objects enquired into, 
the object of enquiry in the karma-ka;^ffa (that part of 
the Veda which treats of active religious duty) being some- 
thing to be accomplished, viz. duty, while here the object 
is the already existent absolutely accomplished Brahman. 
From this it follows that the fruit of the knowledge of 
Brahman must be of a different nature from the fruit of 
the knowledge of duty which depends on the performance 
of actions h — We reply that it must not be such because the 


makes it eight-cornered,’ has a purpose only as being supplementary 
to the injunction ' he ties the victim to the sacrificial post.’ 

^ If the fruits of the two rastias were not of a different nature, 
there would be no reason for the distinction of two .vtlstras ; if they 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 4. 


25 


Vcdanta-tcxts give information about Brahman only in so 
far as it is connected with injunctions of actions. We meet 
with injunctions of the following kind, ‘Verily the Self is to 
be seen’ {Bri. Up. II, 4, 5); ‘The Self which is free from 
sin that it is which we must search out, that it is which 
we must try to understand’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 7, i) ; ‘Let a 
man worship him as Self’ (Br/. Up. I, 4, 7); ‘Let a man 
worship the Self only as his true state’ (Br/. Up. I, 4, 15) ; 
‘ He who knows Brahman becomes Brahman ’ (Mu. Up. Ill, 
3, 9). These injunctions rouse in us the desire to know 
what that Brahman is. It, therefore, is the task- of the 
Vedinta-texts to set forth Brahman’s nature, and they 
perform that task by teaching us that Brahman is eternal, 
alhknowing, absolutely self-sufficient, ever pure, intelli- 
gent and free, pure knowledge, absolute bliss. From the 
devout meditation on this Brahman there results as its 
fruit, final release, which, although not to be discerned 
in the ordinary way, is discerned by means of the 
.rostra. If, on the other hand, the Ved^nta-texts were 
considered to have no reference to injunctions of actions, 
but to contain statements about mere (accomplished) 
things, just as if one were saying ‘ the earth comprises seven 
dvipas,’ ‘that king is marching on,’ they would be pur- 
portless, because then they could not possibly be connected 
with something to be shunned or endeavoured after. — Per- 
haps it will here be objected that sometimes a mere state- 
ment about existent things has a purpose, as, for instance, 
the affirmation, ‘ This is a rope, not a snake,’ serves the 
purpose of removing the fear engendered by an erroneous 
opinion, and that so likewise the Vedanta-passages making 
statements about the non-transmigrating Self, have a pur- 
port of their own (without reference to any action), viz. 
in so far as they remove the erroneous opinion of the Self 
being liable to transmigration.— We reply that this might 


are of a different nature, it cannot be said that the knowledge of 
Brahman is enjoined for the purpose’ of final release, in the same 
way as sacrifices are enjoined for the purpose of obtaining the 
heavenly woild and the like. 



26 


VEDANTA'S^TRAS. 


be so if just as the mere hearing of the true nature of the 
rope dispels the fear caused by the imagined snake, so the 
mere hearing of the true nature of Brahman would dispel 
the erroneous notion of one’s being subject to transmigration. 
But this is not the case ; for we observe that even men to 
whom the true nature of Brahman has been stated continue 
to be affected by pleasure, pain, and the other qualities 
attaching to the transmigratory condition. Moreover, we 
see from the passage, Brf. Up. II, 4, 5, ‘The Self is to be 
heard, to be considered, to be reflected upon/ that con- 
sideration and reflection have to follow the mere hearing. 
From all this it results that the i'istra can be admitted as 
a means of knowing Brahman in so far only as the latter is 
connected with injunctions. 

To all this, we, the Veddntins, make the following 
reply : — The preceding reasoning is not valid, on account 
of the different nature of the fruits of actions on the one 
side, and of the knowledge of Brahman on the other side. 
The enquiry into those actions, whether of body, speech, or 
mind, which are known from Fruti and Smrfti, and are 
comprised under the name ‘religious duty’ (dharma), is 
carried on in the Uaimini Shtra, which begins with the 
words ‘then therefore the enquiry into duty;’ the opposite 
of duty also (adharma), such as doing harm, &c., which is 
defined in the prohibitory injunctions, forms an object of 
enquiry to the end that it may be avoided. The fruits of duty, 
which is good, and its opposite, which is evil, both of which 
are defined by original Vedic statements, are generally 
known to be sensible pleasure and pain, which make them- 
selves felt to body, speech, and mind only, are produced by 
the contact of the organs of sense with the objects, and 
affect all animate beings from Brahman down to a tuft of 
grass. Scripture, agreeing with observation, states that 
there are differences in the degree of pleasure of all em- 
bodied creatures from men upward to Brahman. From 
those differences it is inferred that there are differences 
in the degrees of the merit acquired by actions in accord- 
ance with religious duty; therefrom again are inferred 
differences in degree between those qualified to perform 



I adhyAya, I pAda, 4. 27 

acts of religious duty. Those latter differences are more- 
over known to be affected by the desire of certain results 
(which entitles the man so desirous to perform certain 
religious acts), worldly possessions, and the like. It is 
further known from Scripture that those only who perform 
sacrifices proceed, in consequence of the pre-eminence of 
their knowledge and meditation, on the northern path (of 
the sun; Kh. Up. V, 10, i), while mere minor offerings, 
works of public utility and alms, only lead through smoke 
and the other stages to the southern path. And that there 
also (viz. in the moon which is finally reached by those 
who have passed along the southern path) there are degrees 
of pleasure and the means of pleasure is understood from 
the passage ‘ Having dwelt there till their works are con- 
sumed.’ Analogously it is understood that the different 
degrees of pleasure which are enjoyed by the embodied 
creatures, from man downward to the inmates of hell and 
to immovable things, are the mere effects of religious merit 
as defined in Vedic injunctions. On the other hand, from 
the different degrees of pain endured by higher and lower 
embodied creatures, there is inferred difference of degree 
in its cause, viz. religious demerit as defined in the pro- 
hibitory injunctions, and in its agents. This difference in the 
degree of pain and pleasure, which has for its antecedent 
embodied existence, and for its cause the difference of de- 
gree of merit and demerit of animated beings, liable to 
faults such as ignorance and the like, is well known — from 
^ruti, Smr2ti, and reasoning — to' be non-eternal, of a fleeting, 
changing nature (sawsAra). The following text, for instance, 

‘ As long as he is in the body he cannot get free from 
pleasure and pain’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 13, i), refers to the 
sara-state as described above. From the following passage, 
on the other hand, ‘ When he is free from the body then 
neither pleasure nor pain touches him,’ which denies the 
touch of pain or pleasure, we learn that the unembodied state 
called ‘final release’ (moksha) is declared not to be the 
effect of religious merit as defined by Vedic injunctions. 
For if it were the effect of merit it would not be denied 
that it is subject to pain and pleasure. Should it be said 



28 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


that the very circumstance of its being an unemboclied state 
is the effect of merit, we reply that that cannot be, since 
Scripture declares that state to be naturally and originally 
an iinembodied one. ‘The wise who knows the Self as 
bodiless within the bodies, as unchanging among changing 
things, as great and omnipresent does never grieve ’ (Ka. Up. 
IT, 22); Ude is without breath, without mind, pure’ (Mu. 
Up. II, I, 2); ‘That person is not attached to anything’ 
(Bri. Up. IV, 3, T5)k All which passages establish the fact 
that so-called release differs from all the fruits of action, 
and is an eternally and essentially disembodied state. 
Among eternal things, some indeed may be ‘ eternal, al- 
though changing’ (parMdminitya), viz. those, the idea of 
whose identity is not destroyed, although they may undergo 
changes ; such, for instance, are earth and the other ele- 
ments in the opinion of those who maintain the eternity 
of the world, or the three gu;ms in the opinion of the 
Sahkhyas. But this (moksha) is eternal in the true sense, 
i.c. eternal without undergoing any changes (ku/astha- 
nitya), omnipresent as ether, free from all modifications, 
absolutely self-sufficient, not composed of parts, of self- 
luminous nature. That bodiless entity in fact, to which 
merit and demerit with their consequences and threefold 
time do not apply, is called release ; a definition agreeing 
with scriptural passages, such as the following : ‘ Different 
from merit and demerit, different from effect and cause, 
different from past and future’ (Ka. Up. I, 2, 14). It^ (i. e. 
moksha) is, therefore, the same as Brahman in the enquiry 
into which we are at present engaged. If Brahman were 
represented as supplementary to certain actions, and re- 

^ The first passage shows that the Self is not joined to the gross 
body ; the second that it is not joined to the subtle body ; the third 
that is independent of either. 

® Ananda Giri omits ‘ ata/z.’ His comment is : przthag^i^fids^- 
vishayatvd/t’ kz. dharmadyasprzsh/atva?« brahmazzo yuktam ity^ha l 
tad iti I ata.^ jabdapa//ze dhaimadyaspar^’e karmaphalavailakshazzyaz/z 
hetfikrftain. — The above translation follows Govindananda’s first 
explanation. Tat kaivalyam brahmaiva karmaphalavilakshazzatvad 
ity artha/z. 




1 ADHYAYA, I PADA, 4. 


29 


lease were assumed to be the effect of those actions, it 
would be non-eternal, and would have to be considered 
merely as something holding a pre-eminent position among 
the described non-eternal fruits of actions with their various 
degrees. But that release is something eternal is acknow- 
ledged by whoever admits it at all, and the teaching con- 
cerning Brahman can therefore not be merely supplemen- 
tary to actions. 

There are, moreover, a number of scriptural passages 
which declare release to follow immediately on the cognition 
of Biahman, and which thus preclude the possibility of an 
effect intervening between the two ; for instance, ‘ He who 
knows Brahman becomes Brahman’ (Mu. Up. Ill, 2, 9) ; ‘ All 
his w’orks perish when He has been beheld, who is the higher 
and the lower ’ (Mu. Up. II, 2, 8) ; ‘ Ble who knows the bliss of 
Brahman fears nothing’ (Taitt. Up. 11,9); ‘O Uanaka, you 
have indeed reached fearlessness ’ (Qri. Up. IV, 2, 4) ; ' That 
Brahman knew its Self only, saying, I am Brahman. From 
it all this sprang ’ (Br/. Up. I, 4, 10) ; ‘ What sorrow, what 
trouble can there be to him who beholds that unity ? ’ (!x. Up. 
7.) We must likewise quote the passage, Brf. Up. I, 4, 10, 
(■ Seeing this the A^fshi Vamadeva understood : I was Manu, 
I was the sun,’) in order to exclude the idea of any action 
taking place between one’s seeing Brahman and becoming 
one with the universal Self ; for that passage is analogous 
to the following one, ‘standing he sings,’ from which we 
understand that no action due to the same agent inter- 
venes between the standing and the singing. Other scrip- 
tural passages show that the removal of the obstacles 
which lie in the way of release is the only fruit of the 
knowledge of Brahman ; so, for instance, ‘ You indeed are 
our father, you who carry us from our ignorance to the 
other shore’ (Pr. Up. VI, 8); ‘I have heard from men like 
you that he who knows the Self overcomes grief. I am in 
grief. Do, Sir, help me over this grief of mine ’ {Kh. Up. VII, 
1,3); ‘ To him after his faults had been rubbed out, the venei'- 
able Sanatkumara showed the other side of darkness ’ {Kh> 
Up. VII, 2(5, 2). The same is the purport of the Sutra, sup- 
ported by arguments, of (Gautama) AMrya, ‘ Final release 



30 


vedanta-sOtras. 


results from the successive removal of wrong knowledge, 
faults, activity, birth, pain, the removal of each later mem- 
ber of the series depending on the removal of the preceding 
member ’ (Nyay. Su. I, i, a) ; and wrong knowledge itself is 
removed by the knowledge of one's Self being one with 
the Self of Brahman. 

Nor is this knowledge of the Self being one with Brahman 
a mere (fanciful) combination as is made use of, for instance, 
in the following passage, ‘ For the mind is endless, and the 
Vwvedevas are endless, and he thereby gains the endless 
world ’ (Brz. Up. Ill, i, 9)^ ; nor is it an (in reality unfounded) 
ascription (superimposition)-^, as in the passages, ‘ Let him 
meditate on mind as Brahman,’ and ‘Aditya is Brahman, 
this is the doctrine’ {Kh. Up. Ill, 18, i ; 19, i), where the 
contemplation as Brahman is superimposed on the mind, 
Aditya and so on ; nor, again, is it (a figurative conception 
of identity) founded on the connection (of the things viewed 
as identical) with some special activity, as in the passage, 
‘ Air is indeed the absorber ; breath is indeed the absorber ^ ’ 
{Kh. Up. IV, 3, I ; 3) ; nor is it a mere (ceremonial) purifi- 
cation of (the Self constituting a subordinate member) of 
an action (viz. the action of seeing, 8z;c., Brahman), in the 
same way as, for instance, the act of looking at the sacri- 


^ Sampat. Sampan namalpe vastuny alambane samanyena 
kena/dn mahato vastuna/^ sampadanam. A.nanda Giri. 

^ In which passage the mind, which may be called endless on 
account of the infinite number of modifications it undergoes, is 
identified with the Vijvedevas, which thereby constitute the chief 
object of the meditation ; the fruit of the meditation being immor- 
tality. The identity of the Self with Brahman, on the other hand, is 
real, not only meditatively imagined, on account of the attribute of 
intelligence being common to both. 

“ Adhyasa/z ^dstratostasmiwzs taddhi/z. Sampadi sampadyama- 
nasya prfidhdnyenanudhyanam, adhyase tu alambanasyeti vij-esha>^. 
Ananda Giri, 

^ Air and breath each absorb certain things, and are, therefore, 
designated by the same term ‘ absorber.’ Seyam sawvargadnsh/ir 
vfiyau piawe ka, damfigata^z ^agad darjayati yath^ ^ivatmani hrm- 
hawakriyaya brahmackz'sh/irarantatvfiyaphalayakalpata iti. Bhamati. 





I ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 4. 




I 


ficial butter b For if the knowledge of the identity of the 
Self and Brahman were understood in the way of combina- 
tion and the like, violence would be done thereby to the 
connection of the words whose object, in certain passages, it 
clearly is to intimate the fact of Brahman and the Self being 
really identical ; so, for instance, in the following passages, 
‘That art thou’ {Kh. Up. VI, 8, 7); Tam Brahman’ (Bri Up. 

I, 4, 10) ; ‘ This Self is Brahman ’ {Bri. Up. II, 5, 19). And 
other texts which declare that the fruit of the cognition of 
Brahman is the cessation of Ignorance would be contradicted 
thereby ; so, for instance, ‘ The fetter of the heart is broken, 
all doubts are solved ’ (Mu. Up. II, 3, 8 ). Nor, finally, would it 
be possible, in that case, satisfactorily to explain the passages 
which speak of the individual Self becoming Brahman: 
such as ‘He who knows Brahman becomes Brahman ’ 
(Mu. Up. Ill, 3, 9). Hence the knowledge of the unity of 
Brahman and the Self cannot be of the nature of figurative 
combination and the like. The knowledge of Brahman 
does, therefore, not depend on the active energy of man, but 
is analogous to the knowledge of those things which are the 
objects of perception, inference, and so on, and thus depends 
on the object of knowledge only. Of such a Brahman or 
its knowledge it is impossible to establish, by reasoning, 
any connection with actions. 

Nor, again, can we connect Brahman with acts by repre- 
senting it as the object of the action of knowing. For 
that it is not such is expressly declared in two passages, 
viz. ‘It is different from the known and again above (i.e. 
different from) the unknown ’ (Ken. Up. I, 3) ; and ‘ How 
should he know him by whom he knows all this ? ’ (Bri. Up. 

II, 4, 13.) In the same way Brahman is expressly declared 
not to be the object of the act of devout meditation, viz. in 
the second half of the verse, Ken. Up. I, 5, whose first half 


^ The butter used in the upamuya^a is ceremonially purified by 
the wife of the sacrifice!- looking at it ; so, it might be said, the 
Self of him who meditates on Brahman (and who as kartn — agent — 
stands in a subordinate ahga-relation to the karman of meditation) 
is merely purified by the cognition of its being one with Brahman. 



VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


32 


declares it not to be an object (of speech, mind, and so on), 

‘ That which is not proclaimed by speech, by which speech 
is proclaimed, that only know to be Brahman, not that 
on which people devoutly meditate as this.’ If it should 
be objected that if Brahman is not an object (of speech, 
mind, &c.) the .rastra can impossibly be its source, we refute 
this objection by the remark that the aim of the jastra is 
to discard all distinctions fictitiously created by Nescience. 
The i'astra’s purport is not to represent Brahman definitely 
as this or that object, its purpose is rather to show that 
Brahman as the eternal subject (pratyagatman, the inward 
Self) is never an object, and thereby to remove the dis- 
tinction of objects known, knowers, acts of knowledge, &c., 
which is fictitiously created by Nescience. Accordingly the 
i’dstra says, ‘By whom it is not thought by him it is 
thought, by whom it is thought he does not know it ; un- 
known by those who know it, it is known by those who do 
not know it ’ (Ken. Up. 11,3); and ‘ Thou couldst not see the 
seer of sight, thou couldst not hear the hearer of hearing, 
nor perceive the perceiver of perception, nor know the 
knower of knowledge ’ (Bn. Up. Ill, 4, a). As thereby (1. e. 
by the knowledge derived from the i^dstra) the imagination 
of the transitoriness of Release which is due to Nescience 
is discarded, and Release is shown to be of the nature of 
the eternally free Self, it cannot be charged with the im- 
perfection of non-eternality. Those, on the other hand, who 
consider Release to be something to be effected properly 
maintain that it depends on the action of mind, speech, 
or body. So, likewise, those who consider it to be a mere 
modification. Non-eternality of Release is the certain 
consequence of these two opinions ; for we observe in 
common life that things which are modifications, such as 
sour milk and the like, and things which are effects, such 
as jars, &c., are non-eternal. Nor, again, can it be said 
that there is a dependance on action in consequence of 
(Brahman or Release) being something which is to be 
obtained ^ ; for as Brahman constitutes a person’s Self it is 


^ An hypothesis which might be proposed for the purpose of 




I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 4. 


33 


not something to be attained by that person. And even if 
Brahman were altogether different from a person s Self 
still it would not be something to be obtained ; for as it is 
omnipresent it is part of its nature that it is ever present to 
every one, just as the (all-pervading) ether is. Nor, again, 
can it be maintained that Release is something to be cere- 
monially purified, and as such depends on an activity. 
For ceremonial purification (sa;;2skara) results either from 
the accretion of some excellence or from the removal of 
some blemish. The former alternative does not apply to 
Release as it is of the nature of Brahman, to which no 
excellence can be added ; nor, again, does the latter alter- 
native apply, since Release is of the nature of Brahman, 
which is eternally pure. — But, it might be said, Release 
might be a quality of the Self which is merely hidden and 
becomes manifest on the Self being purified by some 
action ; just as the quality of clearness becomes manifest 
in a mirror when the mirror is cleaned by means of the 
action of rubbing. — This objection is invalid, we reply, 
because the Self cannot be the abode of any action. For 
an action cannot exist without modifying that in which it 
abides. But if the Self were modified by an action its 
non-eternality would result therefrom, and texts such as 
the following, ‘ unchangeable he is called,’ would thus be 
stultified ; an altogether unacceptable result. Hence it is 
impossible to assume that any action should abide in the 
Self. On the other hand, the Self cannot be purified by 
actions abiding in something else as it stands in no relation 
to that extraneous something. Nor will it avail to point 
out (as a quasi-analogous case) that the embodied Self 
(dehin, the individual soul) is purified by certain ritual 
actions which abide in the body, such as bathing, rinsing 
one’s mouth, wearing the sacrificial thread, and the like. 
For what is purified by those actions is that Self merely 
which is joined to the body, i.e. the Self in so far as it is 
under the power of Nescience. For it is a matter of per- 


obviating the imputation to moksha of non-eternality which results 
from the two preceding hypotheses. 

[34] D 




34 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


ception that bathing and similar actions stand in the 
relation of inherence to the body, and it is therefore only 
proper to conclude that by such actions only that some- 
thing is purified which is joined to the body. If a person 
thinks ‘ I am free from disease/ he predicates health of 
that entity only which is connected with and mistakenly 
identifies itself with the harmonious condition of matter 
(i. e. the body) resulting from appropriate medical treatment 
applied to the body (i.e. the ‘I’ constituting the subject of 
predication is only the individual embodied Self). Analo- 
gously that I which predicates of itself, that it is purified by 
bathing and the like, is only the individual soul joined to 
the body. For it is only this latter principle of egoity 
(aha?«kartn], the object of the notion of the ego and the 
agent in all cognition, which accomplishes all actions and 
enjoys their results. Thus the mantras also declare, ‘ One 
of them eats the sweet fruit, the other looks on without 
eating’ (Mu. Up. Ill, i, i); and ‘When he is in union with 
the body, the senses, and the mind, then wise people call 
him the Enjoyer’ (Ka. Up. Ill, i, 4). Of Brahman, on the 
other hand, the two following passages declare that it is 
incapable of receiving any accretion and eternally pure, 

‘ He is the one God, hidden in all beings, all-pervading, 
the Self within all beings, watching over all works, dwelling 
in all beings, the witness, the perceiver, the only one ; free 
from qualities’ (Sv. Up. VI, ii); and ‘He pervaded all, 
bright, incorporeal, scatheless, without muscles, pure, un- 
touched by evil ’ (t^. Up. 8). But Release is nothing but 
being Brahman. Therefore Release is not something to be 
purified. And as nobody is able to show any other way in 
which Release could be connected with action, it is im- 
possible that it should stand in any, even the slightest, 
relation to any action, excepting knowledge. 

But, it will be said here, knowledge itself is an activity 
of the mind. By no means, we reply ; since the two are 
of different nature. An action is that which is enjoined as 
being independent of the nature of existing things and de- 
pendent on the energy of some person’s mind ; compare, for 
instance, the following passages, ‘ To whichever divinity the 



I ADHYAYA, I PAD A, 4 . 


35 


offering is made on that one let him meditate when about 
to say vasha^; ’ (Ait. Brahm. Ill, 8, i) ; and ‘ Let him meditate 
in his mind on the sandhya.’ Meditation and reflection 
are indeed mental, but as they depend on the (meditating, 
&c.) person they may either be performed or not be per- 
formed or modified. Knowledge, on the other hand, is the 
result of the different means of (right) knowledge, and those 
have for their objects existing things ; knowledge can there- 
fore not be either made or not made or modified, but 
depends entirely on existing things, and not either on Vedic 
statements or on the mind of man. Although mental it 
thus widely differs from meditation and the like. 

The meditation, for instance, on man and woman as fire, 
which is founded on KJi. Up. V, 7, i ; 8, i, ‘ The fire is man, 
O Gautama ; the fire is woman, O Gautama,’ is on account 
of its being the result of a Vedic statement, merely an action 
and dependent on man ; that conception of fire, on the other 
hand, which refers to the well-known (real) fire, is neither 
dependent on Vedic statements nor on man, but only on a 
real thing which is an object of perception ; it is therefore 
knowledge and not an action. The same remark applies to 
all things which are the objects of the different means of 
right knowledge. This being thus that knowledge also 
which has the existent Brahman for its object is not de- 
pendent on Vedic injunction. Hence, although imperative 
and similar forms referring to the knowledge of Brahman 
are found in the Vedic texts, yet they are ineffective because 
they refer to something which cannot be enjoined, just as the 
edge of a razor becomes blunt when it is^ applied to a stone. 
For they have for their object something which can neither 
be endeavoured after nor avoided. — But what then, it will 
be asked, is the purport of those sentences which, at any 
rate, have the appearance of injunctions ; such as, ‘ The Self is 
to be seen, to be heard about ? ’ — They have the purport, we 
reply; of diverting (men) from the objects of natural activity. 
For when a man acts intent on external things, and only 
anxious to attain the objects of his desire and to eschew 
the objects of his aversion, and does not thereby reach the 
highest aim of man although desirous of attaining it ; such 

D 2 



VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


0 


6 


texts as the one quoted divert him from the objects of 
natural activity and turn the stream of his thoughts on the 
inward (the highest) Self. That for him who is engaged 
in the enquiry into the Self the true nature of the Self is 
nothing either to be endeavoured after or to be avoided, 
we learn from texts such as the following: ‘This every- 
thing, all is that Self’ (Brf. Up. II, 4, 6) ; ‘But when the 
Self only is all this, how should he see another, how should 
he know another, how should he know the knower?’ 
(Bn. Up. IV, 5, 15); ‘This Self is Brahman’ (Brz. Up. 
IIj 5 ) ^9)- That the knowledge of Brahman refers to 
something which is not a thing to be done, and therefore 
is not concerned either with the pursuit or the avoidance 
of any object, is the very thing we admit; for just that 
constitutes our glory, that as soon as we comprehend 
Bi'ahman, all our duties come to an end and all our work 
is over. Thus S'ruti says, ‘ If a man understands the Self, 
saying, “ I am he,” what could he wish or desire that he 
should pine after the body?’ (Brz. Up. IV, 4, 13.) And 
similarly Smrzti declares, ‘ Having understood this the 
understanding man has done with all work, O Bharata’ 
(Bha. Gitd XV, 30). Therefore Brahman is not represented 
as the object of injunctions. 

We now proceed to consider the doctrine of those who 
maintain that there is no part of the Veda which has the 
purport of making statements about mere existent things, 
and is not either an injunction or a prohibition, or supple- 
mentary to either. This opinion is erroneous, because the 
soul (purusha), which is the subject of the Upanishads, does 
not constitute a complement to anything else. Of that soul 
which is to be comprehended from the Upanishads only, 
which is non-transmigratory, Brahman, different in nature 
from the four classes of substances which forms a topic of 
its own and is not a complement to anything else ; of that 


^ Viz. things to be originated (for instance, gha/az;z karoti), things 
to be obtained (graraawz things to be modified (suvavmm 

kundahm karoti), and things to be ceremonially purified (vrihin 
prokshati). 



I ADIIYAYA, I PADA, 4. 


37 


soul it is impossible to say that it is not or is not apprehended ; 
for the passage, ‘ That Self is to be described by No, no ! ’ 
{Bri. Up. Ill, 9, 26) designates it as the Self, and that the 
Self is cannot be denied. The possible objection that 
there is no reason to maintain that the soul is known from 
the Upanishads only, since it is the object of self-conscious- 
ness, is refuted by the fact that the soul of which the 
Upanishads treat is merely the witness of that (i.e. of the 
object of self-consciousness, viz. the ^ivdtman). For neither 
from that part of the Veda which enjoins works nor from 
reasoning, anybody apprehends that soul which, different 
from the agent that is the object of self-consciousness, 
merely witnesses it ; which is permanent in all (transitory) 
beings ; uniform ; one ; eternally unchanging ; the Self of 
everything. Hence it can neither be denied nor be repre- 
sented as the mere complement of injunctions ; for of that 
very person who might deny it it is the Self. And as it is 
the Self of all, it can neither be striven after nor avoided. 
All perishable things indeed perish, because they are mere 
modifications, up to (i. e. exclusive of) the soul. But the 
soul is imperishable as there is no cause why it should 
perish ; and eternally unchanging, as there is no cause for 
its undergoing any modification ; hence it is in its essence 
eternally pure and free. And from passages, such as 
‘Beyond the soul there is nothing; this is the goal, the 
highest road’ (Ka. Up. I, 3, ii), and ‘That soul, taught in 
the Upanishads, I ask thee ’ {Bri. Up. Ill, 9, 26), it appears 
that the attribute of resting on the Upanishads is properly 
given to the soul, as it constitutes their chief topic. To 
say, therefore, that there is no portion of the Veda referring 
to existing things, is a mere bold assertion. 

With regard to the quotations made of the views of men 
acquainted with the purport of the Nastra (who alone were 
stated to have declared that the Veda treats of actions) it is 
to be understood that they, having to do with the enquiry 
into duty, refer to that part of the F^stra which consists of 


' Whence it follows that it is not something to be avoided like 
transitory things. 




38 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


injunctions and prohibitions. With regard to the other 
passage quoted (‘ as action is the purport of the Veda, what- 
ever does not refer to action is purportless’) we remark 
that if that passage were taken in an absolutely strict sense 
(when it would mean that only those words which denote 
action have a meaning), it would follow that all information 
about existent things is meaningless k If, on the other 
hand, the Veda — in addition to the injunctions of activity and 
cessation of activity — does give information about existent 
things as being subservient to some action to be accom- 
plished, why then should it not give information also about 
the existent eternally unchangeable Self? For an existent 
thing, about which information is given, does not become 
an act (through being stated to be subservient to an act). — 
But, it will be said, although existent things are not acts, yet, 
as they are instrumental to action, the information given 
about such things is merely subservient to action. — This, 
we reply, does not matter; for although the information 
may be subservient to action, the things themselves about 
which information is given are already intimated thereby as 
things which have the power of bringing about certain 
actions. Their final end (prayo^ana) indeed may be sub- 
serviency to some action, but thereby they do not cease 
to be, in the information given about them, intimated in 
themselves. — Well, and if they are thus intimated, what is 
gained thereby for your purpose^? We reply that the 
information about the Self, which is an existing thing not 
comprehended from other sources, is of the same nature 
(as the information about other existent things); for by 
the comprehension of the Self a stop is put to all false 
knowledge, which is the cause of transmigration, and thus a 

' That, for instance, in the passage ‘ he is to sacrifice with Soma,’ 
the word ‘ soma,’ which does not denote an action, is devoid of sense. 

* I.e. for the purpose of showing that the passages conveying 
information about Brahman as such are justified. You have (the 
objector maintains) proved hitherto only that passages containing 
information about existent things are admissible, if those things 
have a purpose ; but how does all this apply to the information 
about Brahman of which no purpose has been established ? 




I ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 4. 


39 


purpose is established which renders the passages relative 
to Brahman equal to those passages which give information 
about things instrumental to actions. Moreover, there are 
found (even in that part of the Veda which treats of actions) 
such passages as ‘ a Brahma^^a is not to be killed/ which 
teach abstinence from certain actions. Now abstinence from 
action is neither action nor instrumental to action. If, 
therefore, the tenet that all those passages which do not 
express action are devoid of purport were insisted on, it 
would follow that all such passages as the one quoted, which 
teach abstinence from action, are devoid of purport— a con- 
sequence which is of course unacceptable. Nor, again, can 
the connexion in which the word ‘not’ stands with the 
action expressed by the verb ‘ is to be killed ’ — which action 
is naturally established ^ — be used as a reason for assuming 
that ‘ not ’ denotes an action non-established elsewhere 
different from the state of mere passivity implied in the 
abstinence from the act of killing. For the peculiar function 
of the particle ‘not’ is to intimate the idea of the non- 
existence of that with which it is connected, and the concep- 
tion of the non-existence (of something to be done) is the 
cause of the state of passivity. (Nor can it be objected 
that, as soon as that momentary idea has passed away, the 
state of passivity will again make room for activity ; for) 
that idea itself passes away (only after having completely 
destroyed the natural impulse prompting to the murder of 
a Brdhma;^a, &c.), just as a fire is extinguished only after 
having completely consumed its fuel. Hence we are of 
opinion that the aim of prohibitory passages, such as ‘a 
Brdhmawa is not to be killed,’ is a merely passive state, 
consisting in the abstinence from some possible action ; 
excepting some special cases, such as the so-called Pra^apati- 
vow, &c.® Hence the charge of want of purpose is to be 


^ It is ‘naturally established’ because it has natural motives — 
not dependent on the injunctions of the Veda, viz. passion and 
the like. 

^ Elsewhere, i. e. outside the Veda. 

® The above discussion of the prohibitory passages of the Veda 



40 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


considered as referring (not to the Vedanta-passages, but 
only) to such statements about existent things as are of the 
nature of legends and the like, and do not serve any purpose 
of man. 

• The allegation that a mere statement about an actually 
existent thing not connected with an injunction of some- 
thing to be done, is purposeless (as, for instance, the state- 
ment that the earth contains seven dvipas) has already 
been refuted on the ground that a purpose is seen to exist 
in some such statements, as, for instance, ‘this is not a 
snake, but a rope.’ — But how about the objection raised 
above that the information about Brahman cannot be held 
to have a purpose in the same way as the statement about 
a rope has one, because a man even after having heard 
about Brahman continues to belong to this transmigratory 


is of a very scholastic nature, and various clauses in it are differently 
interpreted by the different commentators. -Shfikara endeavours to 
fortify his doctrine, that not all parts of the Veda refer to action by 
an appeal to prohibitory passages which do not enjoin action but 
abstinence from action. The legitimacy of this appeal might be 
contested on the ground that a prohibitory passage also, (as, for 
instance, ‘a Brahmawa is not to be killed,’) can be explained as 
enjoining a positive action, viz. some action opposed in nature to 
the one forbidden, so that the quoted passage might be interpreted 
to mean ‘ a determination, &c. of not killing a Brahmawa is to be 
formed ; ' just as we understand something positive by the expression 
' a non-Bnthmai^a,’ viz. some man who is a kshattrij^a or something 
else. To this the answer is that, wherever we can, we must at- 
tribute to the word 'not’ its piimary sense which is the absolute 
negation of the word to which it is joined ; so that passages where 
it is joined to words denoting action must be considered to have 
for their purport the entire absence of action. Special cases only 
are excepted, as the one alluded to in the text where cei tain pro- 
hibited actions are enumerated under the heading of vows ; for as 
a vow is considered as something positive, the non-doing of some 
particular action must there be understood as intimating the per- 
foimance of some action of an opposite nature. The question as 
to the various meanings of the particle 'not’ is discussed in all 
treatises on the Phrv^ see, for instance, Arthasamgraha, 

translation, p. 39 ff. 



I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 4. 


41 


world? — We reply as follows: It is impossible to show 
that a man who has once understood Brahman to be the 
Self, belongs to the transmigratory world in the same sense 
as he did before, because that would be contrary to the 
fact of his being Brahman. For we indeed observe that 
a person who imagines the body, and so on, to consti- 
tute the Self, is subject to fear and pain, but we have no 
right to assume that the same person after having, by 
means of the Veda, comprehended Brahman to be the 
Self, and thus having got over his former imaginings, will 
still in the same manner be subject to pain and fear whose 
cause is wrong knowledge. In the same way we see that a 
rich householder, puffed up by the conceit of his wealth, 
is grieved when his possessions are taken from him ; but we 
do not see that the loss of his wealth equally grieves him 
after he has once retired from the world and put off the 
conceit of his riches. And, again, we see that a person 
possessing a pair of beautiful earrings derives pleasure 
from the proud conceit of ownership ; but after he has 
lost the earrings and the conceit established thereon, the 
pleasure derived from them vanishes. Thus vS'ruti also 
declares, ‘ When he is free from the body, then neither 
pleasure nor pain touches him’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 12, i). If it 
should be objected that the condition of being free from 
the body follows on death only, we demur, since the cause 
of man being joined to the body is wrong knowledge. For 
it is not possible to establish the state of embodiedness upon 
anything else but wrong knowledge. And that the state 
of disembodiedness is eternal on account of its not having 
actions for its cause, we have already explained. The ob- 
jection again, that embodiedness is caused by the merit and 
demerit effected by the Self (and therefore real), we refute 
by remarking that as the (reality of the) conjunction of the 
Self with the body is itself not established, the circumstance 
of merit and demerit being due to the action of the Self is 
likewise not established ; for (if we should try to get over 
this difficulty by representing the Sell’s embodiedness as 
caused by merit and demerit) we should commit the logical 
fault of making embodiedness dependent on merit and dc- 



42 


VEDAlSITA-st)TRAS. 


merit, and again merit and demerit on embodiedness. And 
the assumption of an endless retrogressive chain (of em- 
bodied states and merit and demerit) would be no better than 
a chain of blind men (who are unable to lead one another). 
Moreover, the Self can impossibly become an agent, as it 
cannot enter into intimate relation to actions. If it should 
be said that the Self may be considered as an agent in the 
same way as kings and other great people are (who without 
acting themselves make others act) by their mere presence! 
we deny the appositeness of this instance ; for kings may 
become agents through their relation to servants whom they 
procure by giving them wages, &c., while it is impossible to 
imagine anything, analogous to money, which could be the 
cause of a connexion between the Self as lord and the 
body, and so on (as servants). Wrong imagination, on the 
other hand, (of the individual Self, considering itself to be 
joined to the body,) is a manifest reason of the connexion of 
the two (which is not based on any assumption). This ex- 
plains also in how far the Self can be considered as the agent 
in sacrifices and similar acts \ Here it is objected that the 
Self’s imagination as to the body, and so on, belonging to 
itself is not false, but is to be understood in a derived 
(figurative) sense. This objection we invalidate by the 
remark that the distinction of derived and primary senses 
of words is known to be applicable only where an actual 
difference of things is known to exist. We are, for instance, 
acquainted with a certain species of animals having a mane, 
and so on, which is the exclusive primary object of the idea 
and word ‘ lion,’ and we are likewise acquainted with per- 
sons possessing in an eminent degree certain leonine quali- 
ties, such as fierceness, courage, &c. ; here, a well settled 
difference of objects existing, the idea and the name ‘ lion ’ 
are applied to those persons in a derived or figurative sense. 
In those cases, however, where the difference of the objects 
is not well established, the transfer of the conception and 


^ The Self is the agent in a sacrifice, &c. only in so far as it 
imagines itself to be joined to a body ; which imagination is finally 
removed by the cognition of Brahman. 



I adhyAya, I pAda, 4. 


43 


name of the one to the other is not figurative, but simply 
founded on error. Such is, for instance, the case of a man 
who at the time of twilight does not discern that the object 
before him is a post, and applies to it the conception and 
designation of a man ; such is likewise the case of the con- 
ception and designation of silver being applied to a shell of 
mother-of-pearl somehow mistaken for silver. How then 
can it be maintained that the application of the word and the 
conception of the Ego to the body, &c., which application 
is due to the non-discrimination of the Self and the Not- 
Self, is figurative (rather than simply false) ? considering 
that even learned men who know the difference of the 
Self and the Not-Self confound the words and ideas just 
as common shepherds and goatherds do. 

As therefore the application of the conception of the 
Ego to the body on the part of those who affirm the 
existence of a Self different from the body is simply false, 
not figurative, it follows that the embodied ness of the Self 
is (not real but) caused by wrong conception, and hence 
that the person who has reached true knowledge is free 
from his body even while still alive. The same is declared 
in the JJruti passages concerning him who knows Brahman : 
‘ And as the slough of a snake lies on an ant-hill, dead and 
cast away, thus lies this body; but that disembodied 
immortal spirit is Brahman only, is only light ' (Bn. Up. 
IV, 4, 7); and ‘With eyes he is without eyes as it were, 
with ears without ears as it were, with speech without 
speech as it were, with a mind without mind as it were, 
with vital airs without vital airs as it were.’ Smnti also, 
in the passage where the characteristic marks are enume- 
rated of one whose mind is steady (Bha. Gita II, 54), 
declares that he who knows is no longer connected with 
action of any kind. Therefore the man who has once com- 
prehended Brahman to be the Self, does not belong to this 
transmigratory world as he did before. He, on the other 
hand, who still belongs to this transmigratory world as 
before, has not comprehended Brahman to be the Self. 
Thus there remain no unsolved contradictions. 

With reference again to the assertion that Brahman is not 



44 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


fully determined in its own nature, but stands in a comple- 
mentary relation to injunctions, because the hearing about 
Brahman is to be followed by consideration and reflection, 
we remark that consideration and reflection are themselves 
merely subservient to the comprehension of Brahman. If 
Brahman, after having been comprehended, stood in a 
subordinate relation to some injunctions, it might be 
said to be merely supplementary. But this is not the case, 
since consideration and reflection no less than hearing are 
subservient to comprehension. It follows that the 5astra 
cannot be the means of knowing Brahman only in so far 
as it is connected with injunctions, and the doctrine that 
on account of the uniform meaning of the Vedanta-texts, 
an independent Brahman is to be admitted, is thereby fully 
established. Hence there is room for beginning the new 
6'astra indicated in the first Sutra, ‘ Then therefore the 
enquiry into Brahman.’ If, on the other hand, the Vedanta- 
texts were connected with injunctions, a new Tdstra would 
either not be begun at all, since the Tlstra concerned with 
injunctions has already been introduced by means of the 
first Sutra of the Purva Mima;«sa, ‘ Then therefore the 
enquiry into duty;’ or if it were begun it would be intro- 
duced as follows : ‘ Then therefore the enquiry into the 
remaining duties ; ’ just as a new portion of the Purva 
Mimawsa Sfitras is introduced with the words, ‘Then 
therefore the enquiry into what subserves the purpose of 
the sacrifice, and what subserves the purpose of man ’ (Pu. 
M!. Su. IV, I, i). But as the comprehension of the unity 
of Brahman and the Self has not been propounded (in 
the previous Tastra), it is quite appropriate that a new 
S'dstra, whose subject is Brahman, should be entered upon. 
Hence all injunctions and all other means of knowledge 
end with the cognition expressed in the words, ‘ I am Brah- 
man ; ’ for as soon as there supervenes the comprehension 
of the non-dual Self, which is not either something to be 
eschewed or something to be appropriated, all objects and 
knowing agents vanish, and hence there can no longer be 
means of proof. In accordance with this, they (i.e. men 
knowing Brahman) have made the following declaration : — 



I ADHYAVA, I PADA, 4. 


45 


‘ When there has arisen (in a man’s mind) the knowledge, 
“ I am that which is, Brahman is my Self,” and when, 
owing to the sublation of the conceptions of body, relatives, 
and the like, the (imagination of) the figurative and the false 
Self has come to an end ^ ; how should then the effect ^ (of 
that wrong imagination) exist any longer? As long as 
the knowledge of the Self, which Scripture tells us to search 
after, has not arisen, so long the Self is knowing subject > 
but that same subject is that which is searched after, viz. 
(the highest Self) free from all evil and blemish. Just as 
the idea of the Self being the body is assumed as valid (in 
ordinary life), so all the ordinary sources of knowledge 
(perception and the like) are valid only until the one Self 
is ascertained.’ 

(Herewith the section comprising the four Siitras is 
finished ^.) 

So far it has been declared that the Vedanta-passages, 
whose purport is the comprehension of Brahman being the 
Self, and which have their object therein, refer exclusively 
to Brahman without any reference to actions. And it has 
further been shown that Brahman is the omniscient omni- 
potent cause of the origin, subsistence, and dissolution of 
the world. But now the Sahkhyas and others being of 
opinion that an existent substance is to be known through 
other means of proof (not through the Veda) infer different 
causes, such as the pradhana and the like, and there- 
upon interpret the Veddnta-passages as referring to the 
latter. All the Vedanta-passages, they maintain, which 
treat of the creation of the world distinctly point out that 
the cause (of the world) has to be concluded from the 
effect by inference ; and the cause which is to be inferred 
is the connexion of the pradhana with the souls (purusha). 
The followers of Ka7zada again infer from the very same 


^ The figurative Self, i.e. the imagination that wife, children, 
possessions, and the like are a man’s Self; the false Self, i.e. the 
imagination that the Self acts, suffers, enjoys, &c. 

" I.e. the apparent world with all its distinctions. 

® The words in parentheses are not found in the best manuscripts. 



46 


vedAnta-s6tras. 


passages that the .Lord is the efficient cause of the 
world while the atoms are its material cause. And thus 
other argumentators also taking their stand on passages 
apparently favouring their views and on fallacious argu- 
ments raise various objections. For this reason the teacher 
(Vyasa) — thoroughly acquainted as he is with words, pas- 
sages, and means of proof — proceeds to state as prim a facie 
views, and afterwards to refute, all those opinions founded 
on deceptive passages and fallacious arguments. Thereby 
he at the same time proves indirectly that what the Vedanta- 
texts aim at is the comprehension of Brahman. 

The Sahkhyas who opine that the non-intelligent pra- 
dhina consisting of three constituent elements (guwa) is the 
cause of the world argue as follows. The Vedanta-passages 
which you have declared to intimate that the all-knowing 
all-powerful Brahman is the cause of the world can be 
consistently interpreted also on the doctrine of the pra- 
dhana being the general cause. Omnipotence (more liter- 
ally : the possession of all powers) can be ascribed to the 
pradhdna in so far as it has all its effects for its objects. All- 
knowingness also can be ascribed to it, viz. in the following 
manner. What you think to be knowledge is in reality 
an attribute of the gu?/a of Goodness according to the 
Smrzti passage ‘from Goodness springs knowledge’ (Bha. 
Gita XIV, 17). By means of this attribute of Goodness, 
viz. knowledge, certain men endowed with organs which 
are effects (of the pradhana) are known as all-knowing 
Yogins ; for omniscience is acknowledged to be connected 
with the very highest degree of ‘ Goodness.’ Now to the 
soul (purusha) which is isolated, destitute of effected organs, 
consisting of pure (undifferenced) intelligence it is quite 
impossible to ascribe either all-knowingness or limited 
knowledge; the pradhana, on the other hand, because 
consisting of the three gu//as, comprises also in its pra- 
dhana state the element of Goodness which is the cause 
of all-knowingness. The Vedanta-passages therefore in 


^ The most exalted of the three constituent elements whose 
state of equipoise constitutes the pradhtna. 


I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 5. 


47 


a derived (figurative) sense ascribe all-knowingness to the 
pradhana, although it is in itself iion-intelligent. Moreover 
you (the Veddntin) also who assume an all-knowing Brah- 
man can ascribe to it all-knowingness in so far only as that 
term means capacity for all knowledge. For Brahman 
cannot always be actually engaged in the cognition of 
everything ; for from this there would follow the absolute 
permanency of his cognition, and this would involve a want 
of independence on Brahman’s part with regard to the 
activity of knowing. And if you should propose to con- 
sider Brahman’s cognition as non-permanent it would follow 
that with the cessation of the cognition Brahman itself 
would cease. Therefore all-knowingness is possible only 
in the sense of capacity for all knowledge. Moreover you 
assume that previously to the origination of the world 
Brahman is without any instruments of action. But with- 
out the body, the senses, &c. which are the instruments 
of knowledge, cognition cannot take place in any being. 
And further it must be noted that the pradhana, as con- 
sisting of various elements, is capable of undergoing modi- 
fications, and may therefore act as a (material) cause like 
clay and other substances ; while the uncompounded 
homogeneous Brahman is unable to do so. 

To these conclusions he (Vydsa) replies in the following 
Sutra. 

5. On account of seeing (i. e. thinking being 
attributed in the Upanisliads to the cause of the 
world; the pradhana) is not (to be identified with 
the cause indicated by the Upanishads ; for) it is 
not founded on Scripture. 

It is impossible to find room in the Vedanta-texts for 
the non-intelligent pradhdna, the fiction of the Sankhyas ; 
because it is not founded on Scripture. How so ? Because 
the quality of seeing, i. e. thinking, is in Scripture ascribed 
to the cause. For the passage, Kh. Up. VI, 3, (which 
begins : ‘ Being only, my dear, this was in the beginning, 
one only, without a second,’ and goes on, ‘ It thought (saw), 



48 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


may I be many, may I grow forth. It sent forth fire,’) 
declares that this world differentiated by name and form, 
which is there denoted by the word ‘this,’ was before 
its origination identical with the Self of that which is and 
that the principle denoted by the term ‘the being’ (or 
‘ that which is ’) sent forth fire and the other elements after 
having thought. The following passage also (‘Verily in the 
beginning all this was Self, one only ; there was nothing 
else blinking whatsoever. He thought, shall I send forth 
worlds ? He sent forth these worlds/ Ait. Ar. II, 4, i, a) de- 
clares the creation to have had thought for its antecedent. 
In another passage also (Pr. Up. VI, 3) it is said of the person 
of sixteen parts, ‘ He thought, &c. He sent forth Pra;2a.’ 
By ‘seeing’ (i.e. the verb ‘seeing’ exhibited in the Sutra) 
is not meant that particular verb only, but any verbs which 
have a cognate sense; just as the verb ‘to sacrifice’ is 
used to denote any kind of offering. Therefore other 
passages also whose purport it is to intimate that an all- 
knowing Lord is the cause of the world are to be quoted 
here, as, for instance. Mu. Up. I, i, 9, ‘From him who 
perceives all and who knows all, whose brooding consists 
of knowledge, from him is born that Brahman, name and 
form and food.’ 

The argumentation of the Sankhyas that the pradhdna 
may be called all-knowing on account of knowledge con- 
stituting an attribute of the gu«a Goodness is inadmissible. 
For as in the pradhdna-condition the three giuzas are in a state 
of equipoise, knowledge which is a quality of Goodness only 
is not possible Nor can we admit the explanation that the 
pradh^na is all-knowing because endowed with the capacity 
for all knowledge. For if, in the condition of equipoise of 
the gu;;as, we term the pradhana all-knowing with reference 
to the power of knowledge residing in Goodness, we must 
likewise term it little-knowing, with reference to the power 
impeding knowledge which resides in Passion and Dark- 


Knowledge can arise only where Goodness is predominant, 
not where the three qualities mutually counterbalance one an- 
other. 




I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 5. 


49 


ness. Moreover a modification of Goodness which is not 
connected with a witnessing (observing) principle (sikshin) 
is not called knowledge, and the non-intelligent pradhdna 
is destitute of such a principle. It is therefore impossible 
to ascribe to the pradhana all-knowingness. The case 
of the Yogins finally does not apply to the point under 
consideration; for as they possess intelligence, they may, 
owing to an excess of Goodness in their nature, rise to 
omniscience — Well then (say those Sankhyas who believe 
in the existence of a Lord) let us assume that the pradhana 
possesses the quality of knowledge owing to the witnessing 
principle (the Lord), just as the quality of burning is im- 
parted to an iron ball by fire. — No, we reply ; for if this 
were so, it would be more reasonable to assume that that 
which is the cause of the pradhana having the quality of 
thought i.e. the all-knowing primary Brahman itself is 
the cause of the world. 

The objection that to Brahman also all-knowingne.ss in 
its primary sense cannot be ascribed because, if the activity 
of cognition were permanent, Brahman could not be con- 
sidered as independent with regard to it, we refute as 
follows. In what way, we ask the Saiikhya, is Brah- 
man’s all-knowingness interfered with by a permanent 
cognitional activity? To maintain that he, who possesses 
eternal knowledge capable to throw light on all objects, 
is not all-knowing, is contradictory. If his knowledge were 
considered non-permanent, he would know sometimes, and 
sometimes he would not know; from which it would 
follow indeed that he is not all-knowing. This fault 
is however avoided if we admit Brahman’s knowledge 
to be permanent. — But, it may be objected, on this 
latter alternative the knower cannot be designated as 
independent with reference to the act of knowing. — Why 
not ? we reply ; the sun also, although his heat and light 
are permanent, is nevertheless designated as independent 


* The excess of Sattva in the Yogin would not enable him to rise 
to omniscience if he did not possess an intelligent principle in- 
dependent of Sattva, 

C34] E 



50 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


when we say, ‘he bums, he gives light h’ — But, it will 
again be objected, we say that the sun burns or gives 
light when he stands in relation to some object to be 
heated or illuminated ; Brahman, on the other hand, stands, 
before the creation of the world, in no relation to any object 
of knowledge. The cases are therefore not parallel. — This 
objection too, we reply, is not valid ; for as a matter of fact 
we speak of the Sun as an agent, saying ‘ the sun shines/ 
even without reference to any object illuminated by him, 
and hence Brahman also may be spoken of as an agent, 
in such passages as ‘ it thought/ &c., even without reference 
to any object of knowledge. If, however, an object is 
supposed to be required (‘knowing’ being a transitive 
verb while ‘shining’ is intransitive), the texts ascribing 
thought to Brahman will fit all the better. — What then is 
that object to which the knowledge of the Lord can refer 
previously to the origin of the world ? — Name and form, we 
reply, which can be defined neither as being identical with 
Brahman nor as different from it, imevolved but about to 
be evolved. For pf, as the adherents of the Yoga-j'^stra 
assume, the Yogins have a perceptive knowledge of the 
past and the future through the favour of the Lord ; in 
what terms shall we have to speak of the eternal cognition 
of the ever pure Lord himself, whose objects are the 
creation, subsistence, and dissolution of the world ! The 
objection that Brahman, previously to the origin of the 
world, is not able to think because it is not connected with 
a body, See. does not apply ; for Brahman, whose nature is 
eternal cognition — as the sun’s nature is eternal luminous- 

^ Ananda Giri comments as follows: paroktanupapattim ni- 
rasitum '^rikkh 2 .i\ idam iti. Prakrdyarthabhavat pratyaydrthabhtvid 
va brahma7;o sarvag/lateti prarnam eva praka/ayad katham iti. Pra- 
thamaw pratydha yasyeti. Vkta,m vyatirekadvard vm-imii anityatve 
htti, Dvidya?;; .raiikate ^waneti. Svato nityasy^pi ^/lanasya tatta- 
darthavaH’/dnnasya kdryatvdt tatra svdtantryam pratyayartho brah- 
m^n&h sidhyatity aha. — The knowledge of Brahman is eternal, and 
in so far Brahman is not independent with regard to it, but it is in- 
dependent with regard to each particular act of knowledge ; the 
verbal affix in '^dnad’ indicating the particulaiity of the act. 



I ADHYAvA, I PADA, 5. 


51 


ness — can impossibly stand in need of any instruments of 
knowledge. The transmigrating soul (sa^/^sarin) indeed, 
which is under the sway of Nescience, &c., may require a 
body in order that knowledge may arise in it ; but not so 
the Lord, who is free from all impediments of knowledge. 
The two following Mantras also declare that the Lord does 
not require a body, and that his knowledge is without any 
obstructions. ‘ There is no effect and no instrument known 
of him, no one is seen like unto him or better ; his high power 
is revealed as manifold, as inherent, acting as knowledge 
and force,’ ‘ Grasping without hands, hasting without feet, 
he secs without eyes, he hears without ears. He knows 
what can be known, but no one know'S him ; they call him 
the first, the great pei'son’ {Sv. Up. VI, 8 ; III, 19). 

But, to raise a new objection, there exists no trans- 
migrating soul different from the Lord and obstructed by 
impediments of knowledge ; for Nruti expressly declares 
that ‘there is no other seer but he; there is no other 
knower but he’ (Bn. Up. Ill, 7, 33), How then can it be 
said that the origination of knowledge in the transmigrating 
soul depends on a body, while it does not do so in the case 
of the Lord ? — True, we reply. There is in reality no 
transmigrating soul different from the Lord. Still the 
connexion (of the Lord) w'ith limiting adjuncts, consisting 
of bodies and so on, is assumed, just as we assume the ether 
to enter into connexion with divers limiting adjuncts such 
as jars, pots, caves, and the like. And just as in con- 
sequence of connexion of the latter kind such conceptions 
and terms as ‘the hollow (space) of ajar,’ &c, are generally 
current, although the space inside a jar is not really 
different from universal space, and just as in consequence 
thereof there generally prevails the false notion that there 
are different spaces such as the space of a jar and so on ; 
so there prevails likewise the false notion that the Lord 
and the transmigrating soul are different ; a notion due to 
the non-discrimination of the (unreal) connexion of the soul 
with the limiting conditions, consisting of the body and so 
on. That the Self, although in reality the only existence, 
imparts the quality of Selfhood to bodies and the like 

E 2 



52 


vedanta-sOtras. 


which are Not-Self is a matter of observation, and is due 
to mere wrong conception, which depends in its turn on 
antecedent wrong conception. And the consequence of the 
soul thus involving itself in the transmigratory state is that 
its thought depends on a body and the like. 

The averment that the pradhana, because consisting of 
several elements, can, like clay and similar substances, 
occupy the place of a cause while the uncompounded 
Brahman cannot do so, is refuted by the fact of the pra- 
dhana not basing on Scripture. That, moreover, it is possible 
to establish by argumentation the causality of Brahman, but 
not of the pradhana and similar principles, the Sutrakara 
will set forth in the second Adh5raya (II, i, 4, &c.). 

Here the S^hkhya comes forward with a new objection. 
The difficulty started by you, he says, viz. that the non- 
intelligent pradhdna cannot be the cause of the world, 
because thought is ascribed to the latter in the sacred 
texts, can be got over in another way also, viz. on the 
ground that non-intelUgcnt things are sometimes figura- 
tively spoken of as intelligent beings. We observe, for 
instance, that people say of a river-bank about to fall, ‘ the 
bank is inclined to fall (pipatishati),’ and thus speak of a 
non-intelligent bank as if it possessed intelligence. So the 
pradhana also, although non-intelligent, may, when about 
to create, be figuratively spoken of as thinking. J ust as in 
ordinary life some intelligent person after having bathed, 
and dined, and formed the purpose of driving in the after- 
noon to his village, necessarily acts according to his 
purpose, so the pradhana also acts by the necessity of its 
own nature, when transforming itself into the so-called great 
principle and the subsequent forms of evolution; it may 
therefore figuratively be spoken of as intelligent. — But what 
reason have you for setting aside the primary meaning of 
the word ‘ thought ’ and for taking it in a figurative sense ? 
— The observation, the Sahkhya replies, that fire and water 
also are figuratively spoken of as intelligent beings in the 
two following scriptural passages, ‘ That fire thought ; that 
water thought ’ {Kh. Up. VI, a, 3 ; 4). We therefrom con- 
clude that thought is to be taken in a figurative sense there 



I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 6, 53 


also where Being (Sat) is the agent, because it is mentioned 
in a chapter where (thought) is generally taken in a figura- 
tive sense h 

To this argumentation of the Sahkhya the next Siitra 
replies : 

6. If it is said that (the word ‘seeing*’) has a 
figurative meaning, we deny that, on account of the 
word Self (being applied to the cause of the world). 

Your assertion that the term ‘Being’ denotes the non- 
intelligent pradhana, and that thought is ascribed to it in a 
figurative sense only, as it is to fire and water, is untenable. 
Why so ? On account of the term ‘Self.’ For the passage 
Kh. Up. VI, 3, which begins ‘ Being only, my dear, this 
was in the beginning,’ after having related the creation of 
fire, water, and earth (‘it thought,’ &c.; ‘it sent forth fire,’ 
&c.), goes on— denoting the thinking principle of which the 
whole chapter treats, and likewise fire, water, and earth, by 
the term ‘ divinities ’ — as follows, ‘ That divinity thought : 
Let me now enter those three divinities with this living Self 
(^iva atman) and evolvenames and forms.’ If we assumed that 
in this passage the non-intelligent pradh§,na is figuratively 
spoken of as thinking, we should also have to assume that 
the same pradhana as once constituting the subject-matter 
of the chapter— -is referred to by the term ‘ that divinity.’ 
But in that case the divinity would not speak of the ^iva 
as ‘Self.’ For by the term ‘Uiva’ we must understand, 
according to the received meaning and the etymology of 
the word, the intelligent (principle) which rules over the 
body and sustains the vital airs. How could such a 
principle be the Self of the non-intelligent pradhdna? By 
‘ Self’ we understand (a being’s) own nature, and it is clear 
that the intelligent Uiva cannot constitute the nature of 
the non-intelligent pradhdna. If, on the other hand, we 
refer the whole chapter to the intell igent Brahman, to 

In the second lihznd^ of the sixth Prapa/^aka of the Kh. Up. 

‘ aikshata ’ is twice used in a figurative sense (with regard to fire 
and water) ; it is therefore to be ' understood figuratively in the 
third passage also where it occurs. ^ 


54 VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


which thought in its primary sense belongs, the use of the 
word ‘ Self’ with reference to the Cfiva is quite adequate. 
Then again there is the other passage, ‘ That which is that 
subtle essence, in it all that exists has its self. It is the 
true. It is the Self. That art thou, O Tvetaketu’ {Kh. Up. 
VI, 8, 7 , &c.). Here the clause ‘ It is the Self’ designates 
the Being of which the entire chapter treats, viz. the subtle 
Self, by the word ‘ Self,’ and the concluding clause, ‘ that 
art thou, O Tvetaketu/ declares the intelligent Tvetaketu 
to be of the nature of the Self. Fire and water, on the 
other hand, are non-intelligent, since they are objects (of 
the mind), and since they are declared to be implicated in 
the evolution of names and forms. And as at the same 
time there is no reason for ascribing to them thought in its 
primary sense — while the employment of the word ‘Self’ 
furnishes such a reason with reference to the Sat — the 
thought attributed to them must be explained in a figura- 
tive sense, like the inclination of the river-bank. Moreover, 
the thinking on the part of fire and water is to be under- 
stood as dependent on their being ruled over by the Sat. 
On the other hand, the thought of the Sat is, on account of 
the word ‘ Self,’ not to be understood in a figurative sense 

Flere the Sdnkhya comes forward with a new objection. 
The word ‘ Self,’ he says, may be applied to the pradhana, 
although unintelligent, because it is sometimes figuratively 
used in the sense of ‘that which effects all purposes of 
another ; ’ as, for instance, a king applies the word ‘ Self’ to 
some servant who carries out all the king’s intentions, ‘ Bha- 
drasena is my (other) Self.’ For the pradhana, which effects 
the enjoyment and the emancipation of the soul, serves the 
latter in the same way as a minister serves his king in the 
affairs of peace and war. Or else, it may be said, the one 
word ‘Self’ may refer to non-intelligent things as well as 
to intelligent beings, as we see that such expressions as 
‘the Self of the elements,’ ‘the Self of the senses,’ are made 
use of, and as the one word ‘ light ’ (^yotis) denotes a certain 

^ So that, on this latter explanation, it is unnecessary to assume 
a figurative sense of the word ‘ thinking ’ in any of the three pas- 
sages. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 7. 


55 


sacrifice (the ^yotisli^'oma) as well as a flame. How then 
does it follow from the word ‘ Self ’ that the thinking 
(ascribed to the cause of the world) is not to be taken in a 
figurative sense? 

To this last argumentation the Sutrakara replies: 

7. (The pradhana cannot be designated by the 
term ‘Self’) because release is taught of him who 
takes his stand on that (the Sat). 

The non -intelligent pradhana cannot be the object of the 
term ‘Self’ because in the passage Kh. Up. VI, % ff., where 
the subtle Sat which is under discussion is at first referred to 
in the sentence, ‘ That is the Self,’ and where the subsequent 
clause, ‘ That art thou, O Tvetaketu,’ declares the intelligent 
6'vetaketii to have his abode in the Self, a passage sub- 
sequent to the two quoted (viz. ‘ a man who has a teacher 
obtains true knowledge ; for him there is only delay as long 
as he is not delivered, then he will be perfect’) declares 
final release. For if the non-intelligent pradhana were 
denoted by the term ‘ Sat,’ and did comprehend — by means 
of the phrase ‘That art thou’ — persons desirous of final 
release who as such are intelligent, the meaning could only 
be ‘ Thou art non-intelligent ; ’ so that Scripture would 
virtually make contradictory statements to the disadvantage 
of man, and would thus cease to be a means of right know^- 
ledge. But to assume that the faultless jastra is not a 
means of right knowledge, would be contrary to reason. 
And if the jastra, considered as a means of right knowledge, 
should point out to a. man desirous of release, but ignorant 
of the way to it, a non-intelligent Self as the real Self, he 
would — comparable to the blind man who had caught hold 
of the ox’s tail ^ — cling to the view of that being the Self, 

^ A wicked man meets in a forest a blind person who has lost 
his way, and implores him to lead him to his village ; instead of 
doing so the wicked man persuades the blind one to catch hold of 
the tail of an ox, which he promises would lead him to his place. 
The consequence is that the blind man is, owing to his trustfulness, 
led even farther astray, and injured by the bushes, &c., through 
which the ox drags him. 



56 


vedanta-sOtras. 


and thus never be able to reach the real Self different from 
the false Self pointed out to him ; hence he would be de- 
barred from what constitutes man’s good, and would incur 
evil. We must therefore conclude that, just as the xastra 
teaches the agnihotra and similar performances in their 
true nature as means for those who are desirous of the 
heavenly world, so the passage ‘that is the Self, that art 
thou, O vSvetaketu,’ teaches the Self in its true nature also. 
Only on that condition release for him whose thoughts are 
true can be taught by means of the simile in which the 
person to be released is compared to the man grasping the 
heated axe {Kh. Up. VI, i6}. For in the other case, if the 
doctrine of the Sat constituting the Self had a secondary 
meaning only, the cognition founded on the passage ‘that 
art thou ’ would be of the nature of a fanciful combination 
only like the knowledge derived from the passage, ‘ I am 
the hymn’ (Ait. Ar. II, i, a, 6), and would lead to a mere 
transitory reward ; so that the simile quoted could not 
convey the doctrine of release. Therefore the word ‘ Self’ 
is applied to the subtle Sat not in a merely figurative sense. 
In the case of the faithful servant, on the other hand, the 
word ‘Self’ can — in such phrases as ‘Bhadrasena is my 
Self’ — be taken in a figurative sense, because the difference 
between master and servant is well established by per- 
ception. Moreover, to assume that, because words are 
sometimes seen to be used in figurative senses, a figurative 
sense may be resorted to in the case of those things also 
for which words (i. e. Vedic words) are the only means of 
knowledge, is altogether indefensible for an assumption of 
that nature would lead to a general want of confidence. 
The assertion that the word ‘Self’ may (primarily) signify 
what is non-intelligent as well as what is intelligent, just as 
the word ‘^yotis’ signifies a certain sacrifice as well as 
light, is inadmissible, because we have no right to attribute 
to words a plurality of meanings. Hence (we rather 
assume that) the word ‘Self’ in its primary meaning refers 
to what Is intelligent only and is then, by a figurative 


Cp. above, p. 30. 




I ADPIYAYA, I PAD A, 8. 


57 


attribution of intelligence, applied to the elements and the 
like also; whence such phrases as ‘ the Self of the elements/ 
‘ the Self of the senses.’ And even if we assume that the 
word ‘ Self’ primarily signifies both classes of beings, we 
are unable to settle in any special case which of the two 
meanings the word has, unless we are aided either by the 
general heading under which it stands, or some determina- 
tive attributive word. But in the passage under discussion 
there is nothing to determine that the word refers to 
something non-intelligent, while, on the other hand, the 
Sat distinguished by thought forms the general heading, 
and 6'vetaketu, i. e. a being endowed with intelligence, is 
mentioned in close proximity. That a non-intelligent Self 
does not agree with S’vetaketu, who possesses intelligence, 
we have already shown. All these circumstances determine 
the object of the word ‘ Self’ here to be something intelli- 
gent. The word ‘^yotis ’ does moreover not furnish an 
appropriate example ; for according to common use it has 
the settled meaning of ‘light’ only, and is used in the 
sense of sacrifice only on account of the arthavada assuming 
a similarity (of the sacrifice) to light. 

A different explanation of the Sutra is also possible. 
The preceding Sutra may be taken completely to refute all 
doubts as to the word ‘ Self’ having a figurative or double 
sense, and then the present Sutra is to be explained as con- 
taining an independent reason, proving that the doctrine 
of the pradhana being the general cause is untenable. 

Hence the non-intelligent pradhana is not denoted by 
the word ‘ Self. This the teacher now proceeds to prove 
by an additional reason. 

8. And (the pradhana cannot be denoted by the 
word ‘Self’) because there is no statement of its 
having to be set aside. 

If the pradhana which is the Not-Self were denoted by 
the term ‘Being’ (Sat), and if the passage ‘That is the 
Self, that art thou, O S’vetaketu,’ referred to the pradhina ; 
the teacher whose wish it is to impart instruction about the 



58 vedanta-siDtras. 

true Brahman would subsequently dcclaie that the pradhana 
is to be set aside (and the true Brahman to be considered) ; 
for otherwise his pupil, having received the instruction 
about the pradhana, might take his stand on the latter, 
looking upon it as the Non-Self. In ordinary life a man who 
wishes to point out to a friend the (small) star Arundhati 
at first directs his attention to a big neighbouring star, 
saying ‘ that is Arundhati/ although it is really not so ; 
and thereupon he withdraws his first statement and points 
out the real Arundhati. Analogously the teacher (if he 
intended to make his pupil understand the Self through 
the Non-Self) would in the end definitely state that the 
Self is not of the nature of the pradhana. But no such 
statement is made ; for the sixth PrapaNzaka arrives at a 
conclusion based on the view that the Self is nothing but 
that which is (the Sat). 

The word ‘and’ (in the Sutra) is meant to notify that 
the contradiction of a previous statement (which would be 
implied in* the rejected interpretation) is an additional 
reason for the rejection. Such a contradiction would result 
even if it were stated that the pradhana is to be set aside. 
For in the beginning of the Prap^/Zzaka it is intimated that 
through the knowledge of the cause everything becomes 
known. Compare the following consecutive sentences, 
‘ Have you ever asked for that instruction by which we 
hear what cannot be heard, by which we perceive what 
cannot be perceived, by which we know what cannot 
be known ? What is that instruction ? As, my dear, by 
one clod of clay all that is made of clay is known, the 
modification (i. e. the effect) being a name merely which 
has its origin in speech, while the truth is that it is clay 
merely,’ &c. Now if the term ‘ Sat ’ denoted the pradhana, 
which is merely the cause of the aggregate of the objects 
of enjoyment, its knowledge, whether to be set aside or not 
to be set aside, could never lead to the knowledge of the 
aggregate of enjoyers (souls), because the latter is not an 
effect of the pradhana. Therefore the pradhana is not 
denoted by the term ‘ Sat.’ — For this the Sfitrakara gives 
a further reason. 



I ADIIYAYA, I PADA, 9. 


59 


9. Oil account of (the individual Soul) going to 
the Self (the Self cannot be the pradhana). 

With reference to the cause denoted by the word ‘ Sat/ 
Scripture says, ' When a man sleeps here, then, my dear, he 
becomes united with the Sat, he is gone to his own (Self). 
Therefore they say of him, “ he sleeps ” (svapiti), because he 
is gone to his own (svam apita).’ (/Wa Up. VI, 8, i.) This 
passage explains the well-known verb ‘ to sleep,’ with refer- 
ence to the soul. The word, ‘his own/ denotes the Self which 
had before been denoted by the word Sat; to the Self he (the 
individual soul) goes, i.e. into it it is resolved, according to the 
acknowledged sense of api-i, which means ‘ to be resolved 
into.’ The individual soul (^iva) is called awake as long as 
being connected with the various external objects by means 
of the modifications of the mind — which thus constitute 
limiting adjuncts of the soul — it apprehends those external 
objects, and identifies itself with the gross body, which is 
one of those external objects^. When, modified by the 
impressions which the external objects have left, it sees 
dreams, it is denoted by the term ‘ mind When, on the 
cessation of the two limiting adjuncts (i. e. the subtle and 
the gross bodies), and the consequent absence of the modi- 
fications due to the adjuncts, it is, in the state of deep sleep, 
merged in the Self as it were, then it is said to be asleep 
(resolved into the Self), A similar etymology of the word 
‘ luvdaya ’ is given by miti, ‘ That Self abides in the heart. 
And this is the ct5^mological explanation : he is in the 
heait (hr^di ayam).’ (WA Up. VIII, 3, 3.) The words 
ai'anaya and udanyd are similarly etymologised : ‘ water is 
carrying away what has been eaten by him ; ’ ‘fire carries 
away what has been drunk by him’ (/T/a Up. VI, 8, 3 ; 5), 
Thus the passage quoted above explains the resolution (of 
the soul) into the Self, denoted by the term ‘Sat/ by means 
of the etymology of the word ‘ sleep.’ But the intelligent 

So accoj ding to the commentators, not to accept whose guidance 
in the translation of scholastic definitions is rather hazardous, A 
simpler translation of the clause might however be given. 

® With reference to Up. VI, 8, 2 . 



6o 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


Self can clearly not resolve itself into the non -intelligent 
pradhana. If, again, it were said that the pradhana is 
denoted by the word own/ because belonging to the Self 
(as being the Self’s own), there would remain the same ab- 
surd statement as to an intelligent entity being resolved into 
a non-intelligent one. Moreover another scriptural passage 
(viz. ' embraced by the intelligent — pra^wa — Self he knows 
nothing that is without, nothing that is within/ Brz, Up. 
IV, 3, 2i) declares that the soul in the condition of dream- 
less sleep is resolved into an intelligent entity. Hence that 
into which all intelligent souls are resolved is an intelligent 
cause of the world, denoted by the word ‘ Sat,’ and not the 
pradhana. — A further reason for the pradhana not being the 
cause is subjoined. 

lo. On account of the uniformity of view (of the 
Vedanta-texts, Brahman is to be considered the 
cause). 

If, as in the argumentations of the logicians, so in the 
Vedanta-texts also, there were set forth different views con- 
cerning the nature of the cause, some of them favouring the 
theory of an intelligent Brahman being the cause of the 
world, others inclining towards the pradhana doctrine, and 
others again tending in a different direction ; then it might 
perhaps be possible to interpret such passages as those, which 
speak of the cause of the world as thinking, in such a manner 
as to make them fall in with the pradhdna theory. But the 
stated condition is absent since all the Vedanta-texts uni- 
formly teach that the cause of the world is the intelligent 
Brahman. Compare, for instance, ‘As from a burning fire 
sparks proceed in all directions, thus from that Self the 
pr^na.s proceed each towards its place ; from the pri;2as the 
gods, from the gods the worlds’ (Kau. Up. Ill, 3). And 
‘from that Self sprang ether’ (Taitt. Up. II, i). And ‘all 
this springs from the Self’ {Kk. Up. VII, 26, i). And ‘this 
prdwa is born from the Self’ (Pr. Up. Ill, 3) ; all which 
passages declare the Self to be the cause. That the word 
‘ Self’ denotes an intelligent being, we have already shown. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, II. 6 1 


And that all the Vedanta-texts advocate the same view as 
to an intelligent cause of the world, greatly strengthens their 
claim to be considered a means of right knowledge, just 
as the corresponding claims of the senses are strengthened 
by their giving us information of a uniform character re- 
garding colour and the like. The all-knowing Brahman is 
therefore to be considered the cause of the world, ‘on account 
of the uniformity of view (of the VedAnta-texts).’ — A further 
reason for this conclusion is advanced. 

II. And because it is directly stated in Scripture 
(therefore the all-knowing Brahman is the cause of 
the world). 

That the all-knowing Lord is the cause of the world, is 
also declared in a text directly referring to him (viz. the 
all-knowing one), viz. in the following passage of the man- 
tropanishad of the S’vetas'vataras (VI^ g) where the word 
‘ he ’ refers to the previously mentioned all-knowing Lord, 

‘ He is the cause, the lord of the lords of the organs, and 
there is of him neither parent nor lord.’ It is therefore 
finally settled that the all-knowdng Brahman is the general 
cause, not the non-intelligent pradhina or anything else. 

In what precedes we have shown, availing ourselves of 
appropriate arguments, that the Vedanta-texts exhibited 
under Sutras I, i-ii, are capable of proving that the all- 
knowing, all-powerful Lord is the cause of the origin, 
subsistence, and dissolution of the world. And we have 
explained, by pointing to the prevailing uniformity of view 
(I, lo), that all Vedanta-texts whatever maintain an intelli- 
gent cause. The question might therefore be asked, ‘What 
reason is there for the subsequent part of the Vedanta- 
sutras?’ (as the chief point is settled already.) 

To this question we reply as follows : Brahman is appre- 
hended under two forms ; in the first place as qualified by 
limiting conditions owing to the multiformity of the evolu- 
tions of name and form (i.e. the multiformity of the created 
world ; in the second place as being the opposite of this, 
i.e. free from all limiting conditions whatever. Compare 



62 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


the following passages : Brf. Up. IV, 5, 15, ‘ For where 
there is duality as it were, then one sees the other; but 
when the Self only is all this, how should he see another? ’ 
Kh. Up. VII, 34, I, ‘Where one sees nothing else, hears 
nothing else, understands nothing else, that is the greatest. 
Where one sees something else, hears something else, under- 
stands something else, that is the little. The greatest is 
immortal; the little is mortal;’ Taitt. Ar. Ill, 13, 7, ‘The 
wise one, who having produced all forms and made all 
names, sits calling (the things by their names ; ’ Av, Up. 
VI, 19, ‘Who is without parts, without actions, tranquil, 
without faults, without taint, the highest bridge of immor- 
tality, like a fire that has consumed its fuel Bri. Up. II, 
3, 6, ‘Not so, not so;’ Bri. Up. Ill, 8, 8, ‘It is neither 
coarse nor fine, neither short nor long ; ’ and ‘defective is one 
place, perfect the other.’ All these passages, with many 
others, declare Brahman to possess a double nature, accord- 
ing as it is the object either of Knowledge or of Nescience. 
As long as it is the object of Nescience, there are applied to 
it the categories of devotee, object of devotion, and the 
like^. The different modes of devotion lead to different 
results, some to exaltation, some to gradual emancipation, 
some to success in works ; those modes are distinct on 
account of the distinction of the different qualities and 
limiting conditions ^ And although the one highest Self 
only, i. e. the Lord distinguished by those different qualities 
constitutes the object of devotion, still the fruits (of devotion) 
are distinct, according as the devotion refers to different 
qualities. Thus Scripture says, ‘ According as man wor- 
ships him, that he becomes ; ’ and, ‘ According to what his 
thought is in this world, so will he be when he has departed 

^ The wise one, i. e. the highest Self; which as ^ivtitman is con- 
versant with the names and forms of individual things. 

- I.e. it is looked upon as the object of the devotion of the 
individual souls; while in reality all those souls and Brahman 
are one. 

^ Qualities, i.e. the attributes under which the Self is meditated 
on ; limiting conditions, i. e. the localities — such as the heart and 
the like — which in pious meditation are ascribed to the Self. 




I ADIIYAYA, I PAD A, II. 63 


this life’ (AVa Up. Ill, 14, i)- Smrzti also makes an analo- 
gous statement, ‘ Remembering whatever form of being 
he leaves this body in the end, into that form he enters, 
being impressed with it through his constant meditation 
(Bha. Gita VIII, 6). 

Although one and the same Self is hidden in all beings 
movable as well as immovable, yet owing to the gradual 
rise of excellence of the minds which form the limiting 
conditions (of the Self), Scripture declares that the Self, 
although eternally unchanging and uniform, reveals itself^ 
in a graduated series of beings, and so appears in forms of 
various dignity and power; compare, for instance (Ait. Ar. II, 
3, 3, i), ‘ He who knows the higher manifestation of the Self 
in him 2,’ &c. Similarly Smr/ti remarks, ‘Whatever being 
there is of power, splendour or might, know it to have 
sprung from portions of my glory’ (Bha. Git^, X, 41) ; a 
passage declaring that wherever there is an excess of power 
and so on, there the Lord is to be worshipped. Accordingly 
here (i. e. in the Sutras) also the teacher will show that the 
golden person in the disc of the Sun is the highest Self, on ac- 
count of an indicating sign, viz. the circumstance of his being 
unconnected with any evil (Ved. Su. I, i, 20) ; the same is to 
be observed with regard to I, i, 33 and other Sutras. And, 
again, an enquiry will have to be undertaken into the meaning 
of the texts, in order that a settled conclusion may be reached 
concerning that knowledge of the Self which leads to instan- 
taneous release ; for although that knowledge is conveyed 
by means of various limiting conditions, yet no special con- 
nexion with limiting conditions is intended to be intimated, 
in consequence of which there arises a doubt whether it (the 


^ Ananda Giri reads avish/asya for avishkr/tasya. 

2 Cp. the entire passage. All things are manifestations of the 
highest Self under certain limiting conditions, but occupying differ- 
ent places in an ascending scale. In unsentient things, stones, &c. 
only the satta, the quality of being manifests itself; in plants, 
animals, and men the Self manifests itself through the vital sap ; 
in animals and men there is understanding ; higher thought in man 
alone. 


64 


vedAnta-s6tras. 


knowledge) has the higher or the lower Brahman for its 
object ; so, for instance, in the case of Sutra I, i, la From 
all this it appears that the following part of the S'dstra has 
a special object of its own, viz. to show that the Vedinta- 
texts teach, on the one hand, Brahman as connected with 
limiting conditions and forming an object of devotion, and 
on the other hand, as being free from the connexion with 
such conditions and constituting an object of knowledge. 
The refutation, moreover, of non-intelligent causes different 
from Brahman, which in I, i, lo was based on the uniformity 
of the meaning of the Ved^nta-texts, will be further detailed 
by the Sutrakdra, who, while explaining additional passages 
relating to Brahman, will preclude all causes of a nature 
opposite to that of Brahman. 

12. (The Self) consisting of bliss (is the highest 
Self) on account of the repetition (of the word ‘ bliss,’ 
as denoting the highest Self). 

The Taittiiiya-upanishad (II, 1-5), after having enume- 
rated the Self consisting of food, the Self consisting of the 
vital airs, the Self consisting of mind, and the Self consisting 
of understanding, says, ‘ Different from this which consists of 
understanding is the other inner Self which consists of bliss.’ 
Here the doubt arises whether the phrase, ‘ that which con- 
sists of bliss,’ denotes the highest Brahman of which it had 
been said previously, that ‘It is true Being, Knowledge, with- 
out end,’ or something different from Brahman, just as the 


^ Ananda Giri on the preceding passage beginning from ‘ thus 
here also:’ na kevalam dvaividhyam brahmawa^ ^rutismrftyor eva 
siddhaw \.m tu sutrakntospi matam ity dha, evam iti, jrutismn'tyor 
iva prakrzle^pi jastre dvairhpyam brahmawo bhavati; tatra sopa- 
dhikabrahmavishayam antastaddharmddhikarazzam udaharati idi- 
tyeti ; uktanyayazzz tulyadereshu prasarayati evam iti ; sop^dhikopa- 
dejavan nirupfidhikopade^az^ dar^ayati evam ityadint, ^Xxm.gntmm 
nirzzetavyam iti sambandha/ 5 ; niivzayaprasahgam iha pared; an- 
namayddyupddhidvdroktasya katham paravidytvishayatvaw tatrdha 
upddhili ; nirwayakramam Sha v^kyeti, uktlirtham adhikarawaw kv^- 
stity ^sahkyoktap^/z yatheti. 




I ADHYAYA, I PA DA, 12 . 65 


Self consisting of food, &c., is different from it. — The 
piirvapakshin maintains that the Self consisting of bliss is a 
secondary (not the principal) Self, and something different 
from Brahman ; as it forms a link in a series of Selfs, 
beginning with the Self consisting of food, which all are 
not the principal Self. To the objection that even thus the 
Self consisting of bliss may be considered as the primary 
Self, since it is stated to be the innermost of all, he replies 
that this cannot be admitted, because the Self of bliss is 
declared to have joy and so on for its limbs, and because it 
is said to be embodied. If it were identical with the primary 
Self, joy and the like would not touch it ; but the text 
expressly says ‘Joy is its head;’ and about its being em- 
bodied we read, ‘ Of that former one this one is the em- 
bodied Self’ (Taitt. Up. II, 6), i.e. of that former Self of 
Understanding this Self of bliss is the embodied Self. And 
of what is embodied, the contact with joy and pain cannot 
be prevented. Therefore the Self which consists of bliss is 
nothing but the transmigrating Soul. 

To this reasoning we make the following reply : — By the 
Self consisting of bliss we have to understand the highest 
Self, ‘on account of repetition.’ For the word ‘bliss’ is 
repeatedly applied to the highest Self, So Taitt. Up. II, 
7, where, after the clause ‘That is flavour’ — which refers 
back to the Self consisting of bliss, and declares it to be of 
the natuie of flavour — we read, ‘ For only after having 
perceived flavour can any one perceive delight. Who could 
bieathe, who could breathe forth if that Bliss existed not in 
the ether (of the heart) ? For he alone causes blessedness ; ’ 
and again, II, 8, ‘Now this is an examination of Bliss;’ 
He reaches that Self consisting of Bliss;’ and again, II, 

^ He who knows the Bliss of Brahman fears nothing ; ’ and 
in addition, ‘ He understood that Bliss is Brahman ’ ^III, 6). 
And in another scriptural passage also (Brz. Up. HI, 9, 28), 

‘ Knowledge and bliss is Brahman,’ we see the word ‘ bliss ’ 
applied just to Brahman. As, therefore, the word ‘ bliss ’ 
is repeatedly used with reference to Brahman, we conclude 
that the Self consisting of bliss is Brahman also. The 
objection that the Self consisting of bliss can only denote 
[34] F 



66 


VEDANTA-StJTKAS. 


the secondary Self (the Sa7/^sdrin), because it forms a 
link in a series of secondary Selfs, beginning with the 
one consisting of food, is of no force, for the reason that 
the Self consisting of bliss is the innermost of all The 
vSnstra, wishing to convey information about the primary 
Self, adapts itself to common notions, in so far as it 
at first refers to the body consisting of food, which, 
although not the Self, is by very obtuse people identified 
with it ; it then proceeds from the body to another Self, 
which has the same shape with the preceding one, just as 
the statue possesses the form of the mould into which the 
molten brass had been poured ; then, again, to another one, 
always at first representing the Non-Self as the Self, for the 
purpose of easier comprehension ; and it finally teaches that 
the innermost Self^, which consists of bliss, is the real Self. 
Just as when a man, desirous of pointing out the star 
Arundhati to another man, at first points to several stars 
which are not Arundhati as being Arundhati, while only the 
star pointed out in the end is the real Arundhati ; so here 
also the Self consisting of bliss is the real Self on account of 
its being the innermost (i. e. the last). Nor can any weight 
be allowed to the objection that the attribution of joy and 
so on, as head, &c., cannot possibly refer to the real Self; 
for this attribution is due to the immediately preceding 
limiting condition (viz. the Self consisting of understanding, 
the so-called vi^/Hnakosa), and does not really belong to the 
real Self. The possession of a bodily nature also is ascribed 
to the Self of bliss, only because it is represented as a link 
in the chain of bodies which begins with the Self consisting 
of food, and is not ascribed to it in the same direct sense in 
which it is predicated of the transmigrating Self. Hence 
the Self consisting of bliss is the highest Brahman. 

13. If (it be objected that the term anandamaya, 
consisting of bliss, can) not (denote the highest Self) 
on account of its being a word denoting a modifica- 


^ After which no other Self is mentioned. 



67 


I ADTIYAYA, I PADA, 1 5 . 

tion (or product) ; (we declare the objection to be) 
not (valid) on account of abundance, (the idea of 
which may be expressed by the affix maya.) 

Here the purvapakshin raises the objection that the word 
anandamaya (consisting- of bliss) cannot denote the highest 
Self. — Why? — Because the word anandamaya is understood 
to denote something different from the original word (i. e, 
the word inanda without the derivative affix maya), viz. a 
modification ; according to the received sense of the affix 
maya. ‘ Anandamaya ' therefore denotes a modification, j ust 
as annamaya (consisting of food) and similar words do. 

This objection is, however, not valid^ because ‘ maya ’ is 
also used in the sense of abundance, i. e. denotes that where 
there is abundance of what the original word expresses. So, 
for instance, the phrase ‘ the sacrifice is annamaya ’ means 
‘the .sacrifice is abounding in food’ (not ‘is some modifica- 
tion or product of food ’). Thus here Brahman also, as 
abounding in bliss, is called inandamaya. That Brahman 
does abound in bliss follows from the passage (Taitt. Up. 
II, 8), where, after the bliss of each of the different classes 
of beings, beginning with man, has been declared to be a 
hundred times greater than the bliss of the immediately 
preceding class, the bliss of Brahman is finally proclaimed to 
be absolutely supreme. Maya therefore denotes abundance. 

14. And because he is declared to be the cause of 
it, (i. e. of bliss ; therefore maya is to be taken as 
denoting' abundance.) 

Maya must be understood to denote abundance, for that 
icason also that Scripture declares Brahman to be the cause 
of bliss, ‘For he alone causes bliss’ (Taitt. Up. II, 7). 
Foi he who causes bliss must himself abound in bliss ; 
just as we infer in ordinary life, that a man who enriches 
others must himself possess abundant wealth. As, there- 
foie, maya may be taken to mean ‘abundant,’ the Self 
consisting of bliss is the highest Self, 

15. Moreover (the iiiandamaya is Brahman be- 



68 


vedAnta-sOtras. 

cause) tlie same (Brahman) which had been referred 
to in the mantra is sung, (i. e. proclaimed in the 
Bralima/^a passage as the anandamaya.) 

The Self, consisting of joy, is the highest Brahman for 
the following reason also^. On the introductory words ' he 
who knows Brahman attains the highest ’ (Taitt. Up. II, i), 
there follows a mantra proclaiming that Brahman, which 
forms the general topic of the chapter, possesses the quali- 
ties of true existence, intelligence, infinity ; after that it is 
said that from Brahman there sprang at first the ether and 
then all other moving and non-moving things, and that, 
entering into the beings which it had emitted, Brahman 
stays in the recess, inmost of all ; thereupon, for its better 
comprehension, the series of the different Selfs (‘ different 
from this is the inner Self,’ &c.) are enumerated, and then 
finally the same Brahman which the mantra had proclaimed, 
is again proclaimed in the passage under discussion, ‘ different 
from this is the other inner Self, which consists of bliss,’ 
To assume that a mantra and the Br^hma?/a passage be- 
longing to it have the same sense is only proper, on account 
of the absence of contradiction (which results therefrom) ; 
for otherwise we should be driven to the unwelcome in- 
ference that the text drops the topic once started, and turns 
to an altogether new subject. 

Nor is there mentioned a further inner Self different from 
the Self consisting of bliss, as in the case of the Self con- 
sisting of food, &c.^ On the same (i.e. the Self consisting 
of bliss) is founded, ‘ This same knowledge of Bhr/gu and 
Varium; he understood that bliss is Brahman’ (Taitt. Up. 
Ill, 6). Therefore the Self consisting of bliss is the highest 
Self. 


^ The previous proofs were founded on linga; the argument 
which is now propounded is founded on prakara«a. 

While, in the case of the Selfs consisting of food and so on, a 
further inner Self is duly mentioned each time. It cannot, there- 
fore, be concluded that the Selfs consisting of food, &c., are likewise 
identical with the highest Self referred to in the mantra. 



I ADIlYAYA, I PAD A, I 7. 69 

16. (The Self consisting of bliss is the highest 
Self,) not the other (i. e. the individual Soul), on 
account of the impossibility (of the latter assump- 
tion). 

And for the following reason also the Self consisting of 
bliss is the highest Self only, not the other, i. e. the one 
which is other than the Lord, i. e. the transmigrating in- 
dividual soul. The personal soul cannot be denoted by the 
term ‘ the one consisting of bliss.’ Why ? On account of 
the impossibility. For Scripture says, with reference to the 
Self consisting of bliss, ‘ He wished, may I be many, may 
I grow forth. He brooded over himself. After he had thus 
brooded, he sent forth whatever there is.’ Here, the desire 
arising before the origination of a body, &c., the non- 
separation of the effects created from the creator, and the 
creation of all effects whatever, cannot possibly belong to 
any Self different from the highest Self. 

17. And on account of the declaration of the 
difference (of the two, the anandamaya cannot be the 
transmigrating soul). 

The Self consisting of bliss cannot be identical with the 
transmigrating soul, for that reason also that in the section 
treating of the Self of bliss, the individual soul and the Self 
of bliss are distinctly represented as different ; Taitt. Up. 
lb 7: ‘It (i- e. the Self consisting of bliss) is a flavour; 
for only after perceiving a flavour can this (soul) perceive 
bliss.’ For he who perceives cannot be that which is per- 
ceived. But, it may be asked, if he who perceives or 
attains cannot be that which is perceived or attained, how 
about the following Truti- and SmWti-passages, ‘ The Self 
is to be sought ; ’ ‘ Nothing higher is known than the attain- 
ment of the Self 1 ? ’ — This objection, we reply, is legitimate 
(from the point of view of absolute truth). Yet we see that 
in ordinary life, the Self, which in reality is never anything 

^ Yadi labdha na labdliavyaZi kathay;^ tarhi paramatmano vastuto 
*bhinnena ^ivdtmana paramStmi labhyala ity artha/^. Bhdmatt. 



70 


vedanta-sOtras. 


but the Self, is, owing to non-comprehension of the truth, 
identified with the Non-Self, i. e. the body and so on; 
whereby it becomes possible to speak of the Self in so far 
as it is identified with the body, and so on, as something 
not searched for but to be searched for, not heard but to 
be heard, not seized but to be seized, not perceived but to 
be perceived, not known but to be known, and the like. 
Scripture, on the other hand, denies, in such passages as 
‘there is no other seer but he’ (Br/. Up. Ill, 7, 23), that 
there is in reality any seer or hearer different from the 
all-knowing highest Lord. (Nor can it be said that the 
Lord is unreal because he is identical with the unreal 
individual soiil; for) ^ the Lord differs from the soul (vi^/za- 
natman) which is embodied, acts and enjoys, and is the 
product of Nescience, in the same way as the real juggler 
who stands on the ground differs from the illusive juggler, 
who, holding in his hand a shield and a sword, climbs up 
to the sky by means of a rope ; or as the free unlimited 
ether differs from the ether of a jar, which is determined by 
its limiting adjunct, (viz. the jar.) With reference to this 
fictitious difference of the highest Self and the individual 
Self, the two last Shtras have been propounded. 

18. And on account of desire (being mentioned 
as belonging to the finandamaya) no regard is to be 
had to what is inferred, (i. e. to the pradhana inferred 
by the Sdhkhyas.) 

Since in the passage ‘ he desired, may I be many, may 
I grow forth,’ which occurs in the chapter treating of the 
anandamaya (Taitt. Up. II, 6), the quality of feeling desire 
is mentioned, that which is inferred, i. e. the non-intelhgent 
pradhana assumed by the Sahkhyas, cannot be regarded as 
being the Self consisting of bliss and the cause of the 
world. Although the opinion that the pradhana is the 

^ YathS, paramej-varad bhinno ^ivatml drash/a na bhavaty evam 
^ivatmanospi drash/ur na bhinna/z paramejvara iti ^ivasytnirvd/^- 
yatve paramej'varospy anirva/Sya/z sydd ity ata dha paramejvaras tv 
avidydkalpitad iti. Aiianda Giri. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 1 9 . 7T 


cause of the world, has already been refuted in the Sutra I, 
T, 5, it is here, where a favourable opportunity presents 
itself, refuted for a second time on the basis of the scrip- 
tural passage about the cause of the world feeling desire, 
for the purpose of showing the uniformity of view (of all 
scriptural passages). 

19. And, moreover, it (i. e. Scripture) teaches the 
joining of this (i. e. the individual soul) with that, (i. e. 
the Self consisting of bliss), on that (being fully 
known). 

And for the following reason also the term, ‘ the Self 
consisting of bliss,’ cannot denote either the pradhana or the 
individual soul. Scripture teaches that the individual soul 
when it has reached knowledge is joined, i. e. identified, 
with the Self of bliss under discussion, i. e. obtains final 
release. Compare the following passage (Taitt. Up. II, 7), 

' When he finds freedom from fear, and rest in that which 
is invisible, incorporeal, undefined, unsupported, then he has 
obtained the fearless. For if he makes but the smallest 
distinction in it there is fear for him.’ That means, if he 
sees in that Self consisting of bliss even a small difference 
in the form of non-identity, then he finds no release from 
the fear of trans migratory existence. But when he, by 
means of the cognition of absolute identity, finds absolute 
rest in the Self consisting of bliss, then he is freed from the 
fear of transmigratory existence. But this (finding absolute 
rest) is possible only when we understand by the Self con- 
sisting of bliss, the highest Self, and not either the pra- 
dhdna or the individual soul. Hence it is proved that the 
Self consisting of bliss is the highest Self 
But, in reality, the following remarks have to be made 
conceining the true meaning of the word ^anandamayab’ 
On what grounds, we ask, can it be maintained that the 


The explanation of the anandamaya given hitherto is here re- 
called, and a different one given. The previous explanation is 
attributed by Go. An. to the vrz’ttikara. 



72 


vedanta-sOtras. 


affix ‘ maya ’ after having, in the series of compounds begin- 
ning with annamaya and ending with vi^«anamaya, denoted 
mere modifications, should all at once, in the word ananda- 
maya, which belongs to the same series, denote abun- 
dance, so that anandamaya would refer to Brahman? If 
it should be said that the assumption is made on account of 
the governing influence of the Brahman proclaimed in the 
mantra (which forms the beginning of the chapter, Taitt. 
Up. II), we reply that therefrom it would follow that also 
the Selfs consisting of food, breath, &c., denote Brahman 
(because the governing influence of the mantra extends to 
them also). — The advocate of the former interpretation 
will here, perhaps, restate an argument already made use 
of above, viz. as follows : To assume that the Selfs consisting 
of food, and so on, are not Brahman is quite proper, because 
after each of them an inner Self is mentioned. After the 
Self of bliss, on the other hand, no further inner Self is 
mentioned, and hence it must be considered to be Brahman 
itself ; otherwise we should commit the mistake of dropping 
the subject-matter in hand (as which Brahman is pointed 
out by the mantra), and taking up a new topic. — But to this 
we reply that, although unlike the case of the Selfs con- 
sisting of food, &c., no inner Self is mentioned after the Self 
consisting of bliss, still the latter cannot be considered as 
Brahman, because with reference to the Self consisting of 
bliss Scripture declares, ‘Joy is its head. Satisfaction is its 
right arm. Great satisfaction is its left arm. Bliss is its 
trunk. Brahman is its tail, its support.’ Now, here the 
very same Brahman which, in the mantra, had been 
introduced as the subject of the discussion, is called 
the tail, the support; while the five involucra, extending 
from the involucrum of food up to the involucrum of 
bliss, are merely introduced for the purpose of setting 
forth the knowledge of Brahman. How, then, can it be 
maintained that our interpretation implies the needless 
dropping of the general subject-matter and the introduction 
of a new topic ? — But, it may again be objected, Brahman 
is called the tail, i. e. a member of the Self consisting of 
bliss; analogously to those passages in which a tail and 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 1 9 . 


73 


Other members are ascribed to the Selfs consisting of food 
and so on. On what grounds, then, can we claim to know 
that Brahman (which is spoken of as a mere member, i. e. a 
subordinate matter) is in reality the chief matter referred to ? 
— From the fact, we reply, of Brahman being the general 
subject-matter of the chapter. — But, it will again be said, 
that interpretation also according to which Brahman is 
cognised as a mere member of the anandamaya does not 
involve a dropping of the subject-matter, since the ananda- 
maya himself is Brahman. — But, we reply, in that case one 
and the same Brahman would at first appear as the whole, 
viz. as the Self consisting of bliss, and thereupon as a mere 
part, viz. as the tail ; which is absurd. And as one of the 
two alternatives must be preferred, it is certainly appro- 
priate to refer to Brahman the clause ‘Brahman is the 
tail ’ which contains the word ‘ Brahman,’ and not the 
sentence about the Self of Bliss in which Brahman is 
not mentioned. Moreover, Scripture, in continuation 
of the phrase, ‘ Brahman is the tail, the support,’ goes 
on, ‘ On this there is also the following j'loka : He who 
knows the Brahman as non-existing becomes himself non- 
existing. He who knows Brahman as existing him we 
know himself as existing.’ As this Hoka, without any refer- 
ence to the Self of bliss, states the advantage and disadvan- 
tage connected with the knowledge of the being and non- 
being of Brahman only, w'e conclude that the clause, 

‘ Brahman is the tail, the support,’ represents Brahman as 
the chief matter (not as a merely subordinate matter). 
About the being or non-being of the Self of bliss, on the 
othei hand, a doubt is not well possible, since the Self of 
bliss distinguished by joy, satisfaction, &c., is well known 
to every one. — But if Brahman is the principal matter, how 
can it be designated as the mere tail of the Self of bliss 
( Brahman is the tail, the support ’) ? — Its being called so, 
we reply, fomis no objection ; for the word tail here denotes 
that which is of the nature of a tail, so that we have to 
understand that the bliss of Brahman is not a member (in 
its literal sense), but the support or abode, the one nest 
(resting-place) of all worldly bliss. Analogously another 



74 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


scriptural passage declares, ‘ All other creatures live on a 
small portion of that bliss’ (Br/. Up. IV, 3, ^2). Further, 
if by the Self consisting of bliss we were to understand 
Brahman, we should have to assume that the Brahman 
meant is the Brahman distinguished by qualities (savii'esha), 
because it is said to have joy and the like for its members. 
But this assumption is contradicted by a complementary 
passage (II, 9) which declares that Brahman is the object 
neither of mind nor speech, and so shows that the Brahman 
meant is the (absolute) Brahman (devoid of qualities), 
‘ From whence all speech, with the mind, turns away unable 
to reach it, he who knows the bliss of that Brahman fears 
nothing.’ Moreover, if we speak of something as ‘abounding 
in bliss V we thereby imply the co-existence of pain ; for 
the word ‘abundance’ in its ordinary sense implies the 
existence of a small measure of what is opposed to the 
thing whereof there is abundance. But the passage so 
understood would be in conflict with another passage (K/i. 
Up. VII, 34), ‘Where one sees nothing else, hears nothing 
else, understands nothing else, that is the Infinite ; ’ which 
declares that in the Infinite, i. e. Brahman, there is nothing 
whatever different from it. Moreover, as joy, &c. differ in 
each individual body, the Self consisting of bliss also is a 
different one in each body. Brahman, on the other hand, 
does not differ according to bodies ; for the mantra at the be- 
ginning of the chapter declares it to be true Being,knowledge, 
infinite, and another passage says, ‘ He is the one God, hidden 
in all beings, all-pervading, the Self within all beings ’ {Sv. 
Up. VI, ii). Nor, again, does Scripture exhibit a frequent 
repetition of the word ‘ anandamaya ; ’ for merely the radical 
pait of the compound (i.e. the word ananda without the 
affix maya) is repeated in all the following passages ; ‘ It 
is a flavour, for only after seizing flavour can any one seize 
bliss. Who could breathe, who could breathe forth, if that 
bliss existed not in the ether ? For he alone causes blessed- 
ness;’ ‘Now this is an examination of bliss;’ ‘He who 


^ In which sense, as shown above, the word dnandamaya must 
be taken if understood to denote Brahman. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, IQ. 


75 


knows the bliss of that Brahman fears nothing;’ 'He 
understood that bliss is Brahman,’ If it were a settled 
matter that Brahman is denoted by the term, 'the Self 
consisting of bliss,’ then we could assume that in the subse- 
quent passages, where merely the word ‘bliss’ is employed, 
the term ‘ consisting of bliss ’ is meant to be repeated ; but 
that the Self consisting of bliss is not Brahman, we have 
already proved by means of the reason of joy being its 
head, and so on. Hence, as in another scriptural passage, 
viz. 'Brahman is knowledge and bliss’ (Brz. Up. Ill, 9, 28), 
the mere word ‘ bliss ’ denotes Brahman, we must conclude 
that also in such passages as, ‘ If that bliss existed not in 
the ether,’ the word bliss is used with reference to Brahman, 
and is not meant to repeat the term ‘ consisting of bliss.’ 
The repetition of the full compound, ‘consisting of bliss,’ 
which occurs in the passage, ‘ He reaches that Self consisting 
of bliss ’ (Taitt. Up. II, 8), does not refer to Brahman, as it 
is contained in the enumeration of Non- Selfs, comprising the 
Self of food, &c., all of which are mere effects, and all of 
which are represented as things to be reached. — But, it may 
be said, if the Self consisting of bliss, which is said to have 
to be reached, were not Brahman — just as the Selfs con- 
sisting of food, &c. are not Brahman— then it would not be 
declared (in the passage immediately following) that he who 
knows obtains for his reward Brahman. — This objection 
we invalidate by the remark that the text makes its 
declaration as to Brahman — which is the tail, the support — 
being reached by him who knows, by the very means of 
the declaration as to the attainment of the Self of bliss ; as 
appears from the passage, ‘ On this there is also this .rloka, 
fiom which all speech returns,’ &c. With reference, again, 
to the passage, ‘ He desired : may I be many, may I grow 
forth,’ which is found in proximity to the mention of the 
Self consisting of bliss, we remark that it is in reality con- 
nected (not with the Self of bliss but with) Brahman, which 
is mentioned in the still nearer passage, ‘Brahman is the tail, 
the support, and does therefore not intimate that the Self 
of bliss is Brahman. And, on account of its referring to 
the passage last quoted (' it desired,’ &c.), the later passage 



76 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


also, ‘ That is flavour,’ &c., has not the Self of bliss for its 
subject. — But, it may be objected, the (neuter word) Brah- 
man cannot possibly be designated by a masculine word as 
you maintain is done in the passage, ‘ He desired,’ &c. — In 
reply to this objection we point to the passage (Taitt. Up. 
II, i), ‘From that Self sprang ether,’ where, likewise, the 
masculine word ‘Self’ can refer to Brahman only, since 
the latter is the general topic of the chapter. In the know- 
ledge of Bhrzgu and Varu//a finally {‘ he knew that bliss is 
Brahman’), the word ‘bliss’ is rightly understood to denote 
Brahman, since we there meet neither with the affix ‘ maya,’ 
nor with any statement as to joy being its head, and the 
like. To ascribe to Brahman in itself joy, and so on, as its 
members, is impossible, unless we have recourse to certain, 
however minute, distinctions qualifying Brahman ; and that 
the whole chapter is not meant to convey a knowledge of 
the qualified (savijesha) Brahman is proved by the passage 
(quoted above), wffiich declares that Brahman transcends 
speech and mind. We therefore must conclude that the 
affix maya, in the word anandamaya, does not denote 
abundance, but expresses a mere effect, just as it does in 
the words annamaya and the subsequent similar com- 
pounds. 

The Sutras are therefore to be explained as follows. 
There arises the question whether the passage, ‘ Brahman 
is the tail, the support,’ is to be understood as intimating 
that Brahman is a mere member of the Self consisting of 
bliss, or that it is the principal matter. If it is said that it 
must be considered as a mere member, the reply is, ‘ The 
Self consisting of bliss on account of the repetition.’ That 
means : Brahman, which in the passage ‘ the Self con- 
sisting of bliss,’ &c., is spoken of as the tail, the support, 
is designated as the principal matter (not as something 
subordinate). On account of the repetition ; for in the 
memorial Hoka, ‘ he becomes himself non-existing,’ Brah- 
man alone is reiterated. ‘ If not, on account of the word 
denoting a modification ; not so, on account of abundance.’ 
In this Sutra the word ‘ modification ’ is meant to convey 
the sense of member. The objection that on account of 



I adhyAya, I pAda, 20. 


77 


the word ‘tail,’ which denotes a mere member. Brahman 
cannot be taken as the principal matter must be refuted. 
This we do by remarking that there is no difficulty, since 
a word denoting a member may be introduced into the 
passage on account of praX’urya Pra/^urya here means a 
phraseology abounding in terms denoting members. After 
the different members, beginning with the head and ending 
with the tail, of the Selfs, consisting of food, &c. have been 
enumerated, there are also mentioned the head and the other 
limbs of the Self of bliss, and then it is added, ‘ Brahman 
is the tail, the support ; ’ the intention being merely to intro- 
duce some more terms denoting members, not to convey 
the meaning of ‘ member,’ (an explanation which is impos- 
sible) because the preceding Sutra already has proved 
Brahman (not to be a member, but) to be the principal 
matter. ‘ And because he is declared to be the cause of it.’ 
That means : Brahman is declared to be the cause of the 
entire aggregate of effects, inclusive of the Self, consisting 
of bliss, in the following passage, ‘ He created all whatever 
there is’ (Taitt. Up. II, 6). And as Brahman is the cause, 
it cannot at the same time be called the member, in the 
literal sense of the word, of the Self of bliss, which is nothing 
but one of Brahman’s effects. The other Sutras also (which 
refer to the Self of bliss ^) are to be considered, as well as 
they may, as conveying a knowledge of Brahman, which 
(Brahman) is referred to in the passage about the tail. 

20. The one within (the sun and the eye) (is the 
highest Lord), on account of his qualities being 
declared ^ 

The following passage is found in Scripture (IC/i. Up. I, 
6, 6 ff.), ^Now that person bright as gold who is seen within 

' I, e. the word translated hitherto by abundance. 

See I, I, 15-19. 

® The preceding adhikara;^a had shown that the five Selfs (con- 
sisting of food, mind, and so on), which the Taitt. Up. enumerates, 
are introduced merely for the purpose of facilitating the cognition of 
Brahman considered as devoid of all qualities j while that Brahman 



78 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


the sun, with beard bright as gold and hair bright as gold, 
bright as gold altogether to the very tips of his nails, whose 
eyes are like blue lotus ; his name is Ut, for he has risen 
(udila) above all evil. He also who knows this rises above 
all evil. So much with reference to the dcvas.’ And 
further on, with reference to the body, ‘Now the person 
who is seen in the eye,’ &c. Here the following doubt 
presents itself. Do these passages point out, as the object 
of devotion directed on the sphere of the sun and the eye, 
merely some special individual soul, which, by means of 
a large measure of knowledge and pious works, has raised 
itself to a position of eminence; or do they refer to the 
eternally perfect highest Lord ? 

The pLirvapakshin takes the former view. An individual 
soul, he says, is referred to, since Scripture speaks of a 
definite shape. To the person in the sun special features 
are ascribed, such as the possession of a beard as bright as 
gold and so on, and the same features manifestly belong to 
the person in the eye also, since they are expressly trans- 
ferred to it in the passage, ‘ The shape of this person is the 
same as the shape of that person.’ That, on the other 
hand, no shape can be ascribed to the highest Lord, follow^s 
from the passage (Kau. Up. I, 3, 15), ‘ That which is without 
sound, without touch, wdthout form, without decay.’ That 
an individual soul is meant follows moreover from the fact 
that a definite abode is mentioned, ‘ He who is in the sun ; 
he who is in the eye.’ About the highest Lord, who has no 
special abode, but abides in his own glory, no similar state- 
ment can be made; compare, for instance, the two following 
passages, ‘ Where does he rest? In his own glory?’ {Kh, 
Up. VII, 34, i) ; and ‘ like the ether he is omnipresent, 
eternal.’ A further argument for our view is supplied by 
the fact that the might (of the being in question) is said to 
be limited ; for the passage, ‘ He is lord of the worlds 
beyond that, and of the wishes of the devas,’ indicates the 


itself is the real object of knowledge. The present adhikara/a un- 
dei takes to show that the passage about the golden person represents 
the savhesha Brahman as the object of devout meditation. 



T ADIIYAYA, I PADA, 20. 


79 


limitation of the might of the person in the sun ; and the 
passage, ‘He is lord of the worlds beneath that and of 
the wishes of men,’ indicates the limitation of the might 
of the person in the eye. No limit, on the other hand, can 
be admitted of the might of the highest Lord, as appears 
from the passage (Brf. Up. IV, 4, 22), ‘ He is the Lord of all, 
the king of all things, the protector of all things. He is a 
bank and a boundary so that these worlds may not be 
confounded ; ’ which passage intimates that the Lord is 
free from all limiting distinctions. For all these reasons 
the person in the eye and the sun cannot be the highest 
Lord. 

To this reasoning the Sutra replies, ‘The one within, on 
account of his qualities being declared.’ The person 
referred to in the passages concerning the person within 
the sun and the person within the eye is not a trans- 
migrating being, but the highest Lord. Why? Because 
his qualities are declared. For the qualities of the highest 
Lord arc indicated in the text as follows. At first the 
name of the person within the sun is mentioned — ‘ his 
name is Ut’ — and then this name is explained on the 
ground of that person being free from all evil, ‘He has 
risen above all evil.’ The same name thus explained is 
then transferred to the person in the eye, in the clause, 

‘ the name of the one is the name of the other.’ Now, 
entire freedom from sin is attributed in Scripture to the 
highest Self only; so, for instance (W/a Up. VIII, 7, i), 
The Self which is free from sin,’ &c. Then, again, there is 
the passap, ‘ He is Afk, he is Saman, Uktha, Ya^us, Brah- 
man,’ which declares the person in the eye to be the Self 
of the J?zk, Saman, and so on ; which is possible only if 
that person is the Lord who, as being the cause of all, is 
to be considered as the Self of all. Moreover, the text, 
after having stated in succession i?fk and Saman to have 
earth and fire for their Self with reference to the Devas, 
and, again, speech and breath with reference to the body' 
continues, ‘ A/k and Saman are his joints,’ with reference to 
the Devas, and ‘ the joints of the one are the joints of the 
other,’ with reference to the body. Now this statement 



8o 


VEDANTA-S^JTRAS. 


also can be made only with regard to that which is the 
Self of all. Further, the passage, ‘ Therefore all who sing 
to the Vina sing him, and from him also they obtain 
wealth,’ shows that the being spoken of is the sole topic 
of all worldly songs ; which again holds true of the highest 
Lord only. That absolute command over the objects of 
worldly desires (as displayed, for instance, in the bestowal 
of wealth) entitles us to infer that the Lord is meant, 
appears also from the following passage of the Bhagavad- 
gita (X, 41), ‘Whatever being there is possessing power, 
glory, or strength, know it to be produced from a portion 
of my energy L’ To the objection that the statements 
about bodily shape contained in the clauses, ‘ With a 
beard bright as gold,’ Src., cannot refer to the highest 
Lord, we reply that the highest Lord also may, when he 
pleases, assume a bodily shape formed of Maya, in order 
to gratify thereby his devout worshippers. Thus Smr/ti 
also says, ‘That thou seest me, O Nirada, is the Miya 
emitted by me ; do not then look on me as endowed with 
the qualities of all beings.’ We have further to note that 
expressions such as, ‘ That which is without sound, without 
touch, without form, without decay,’ are made use of where 
Instruction is given about the nature of the highest Lord in 
so far as he is devoid of all qualities ; while passages such 
as the following one, ‘ He to whom belong all works, all 
desires, all sweet odours and tastes’ {Kh. Up. Ill, 14, 3), 
which represent the highest Lord as the object of devotion, 
speak of him, who is the cause of everything, as possessing 
some of the qualities of his effects. Analogously he may 
be spoken of, in the passage under discussion, as having a 
beard bright as gold and so on. With reference to the 
objection that the highest Lord cannot be meant because 
an abode is spoken of, we remark that, for the purposes of 
devout meditation, a special abode may be assigned to 
Brahman, although it abides in its own glory only ; for as 
Brahman is, like ether, all-pervading, it may be viewed as 


^ So that the real giver of the gifts bestowed by princes on poets 
and singers is Brahman. 



I ADHYAYA, I PAD A, 22. 


8l. 


being within the Self of all beings. The statement, finally, 
about the limitation of Brahman’s might, which depends on 
the distinction of what belongs to the gods and what to the 
body, has likewise reference to devout meditation only. 
From all this it follows that the being which Scripture 
states to be within the eye and the sun is the highest Lord. 

21. And there is another one (i. e. the Lord who 
is different from the individual souls animating- the 
sun, &c.), on account of the declaration of distinc- 
tion. 

There is, moreover, one distinct from the individual 
souls which animate the sun and other bodies, viz. the Lord 
who rules within ; whose distinction (from all individual 
souls) is proclaimed in the following scriptural passage, ‘ He- 
who dwells in the sun and within the sun, whom the sun 
does not know, whose body the sun is, and who rules the 
sun within ; he is thy Self, the ruler within, the immortal ’ 
(Bn. Up. Ill, 7, 9). Flere the expression, ‘ He within the 
sun whom the sun does not know,’ clearly indicates that the 
Ruler w'ithin is distinct from that cognising individual soul 
whose body is the sun. With that Ruler within we have to 
identify the person within the sun, according to the tenet 
of the sameness of purport of all Veddnta-texts. It thus 
remains a settled conclusion that the passage under dis- 
cussion conveys instruction about the highest Lord. 

22. The akto, i. e. ether (is Brahman) on account 
of characteristic marks (of the latter being men- 
tioned). 

In the A /^andogya (I, 9) the following passage is met with, 
‘What is the origin of this world?’ ‘Ether,’ he replied. ‘For 
all these beings take their rise from the ether only, and 
return into the ether. Ether is greater than these, ether is 
their rest. Here the following doubt arises. Does the word 
ether denote the highest Brahman or the elemental ether ? 

Whence the doubt ? — Because the word is seen to be used 
in both senses. Its use in the sense of ‘ elemental ether ’ 
is well established in ordinary as well as in Vedic speech ; 

C 34 ] G 



82 


vedanta-sOtras. 


and, on the other hand, we see that it is sometimes used to 
denote Brahman, viz. in cases where we ascertain, either 
from some complementary sentence or from the fact of 
special qualities being mentioned, that Brahman is meant. 
So, for instance, Taitt. Up. II, 7, ‘ If that bliss existed not 
in the ether;’ and Kh. Up. VIII, 14, ‘That which is called 
ether is the revealer of all forms and names ; that within 
which forms and names are^ that is Brahman.’ Hence the 
doubt. — Which sense is then to be adopted in our case ? — 
The sense of elemental ether, the purvapakshin replies ; 
because this sense belongs to the word more commonly, 
and therefore presents itself to the mind more readily. 
The word ‘ ether ’ cannot be taken in both senses equally, 
because that would involve a (faulty) attribution of several 
meanings to one and the same word. Hence the term 
‘ ether ’ applies to Brahman in a secondary (metaphorical) 
sense only ; on account of Brahman being in many of its 
attributes, such as all pervadingness and the like, similar to 
ether. The rule is, that when the primary sense of a word 
is possible, the word must not be taken in a secondary sense. 
And in the passage under discussion only the primary sense 
of the word ‘ether’ is admissible. Should it be objected 
that, if we refer the passage under discussion to the ele- 
mental ether, a complementary passage (‘for all these 
beings take their rise from the ether only, &c.’) cannot be 
satisfactorily accounted for; we reply that the elemental 
ether also may be represented as a cause, viz, of air, fire, &c. 
in due succession. For we read in Scripture (Taitt. Up. 
II, i), ‘ From that Self sprang ether, from ether air, from 
air fire, and so on.’ The qualities also of being greater 
and of being a place of rest may be ascribed to the elemental 
ether, if we consider its relations to all other beings. There- 
fore we conclude that the word ‘ ether ’ here denotes the 
elemental ether. 

To this we reply as follows : — The word ether must here 
be taken to denote Brahman, on account of characteristic 
marks of the latter being mentioned. For the sentence, 


^ Or else ‘that which is within forms and names.’ 




I ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 2 2. 


83 


‘ All these beings take their rise from the ether only,’ clearly 
indicates the highest Brahman, since all Vedanta-texts 
agree in definitely declaring that all beings spring from 
the highest Brahman. — But, the opponent may say, we 
have shown that the elemental ether also may be repre- 
sented as the cause, viz, of air, fire, and the other elements 
in due succession. — We admit this. But still there remains 
the difficulty, that, unless we understand the word to apply 
to the fundamental cause of all, viz. Brahman, the affirmation 
contained in the word ‘only ’and the qualification expressed 
by the word ‘ all ’ (in ‘ all beings ’) would be out of place. 
Moreover, the clause, ‘They return into the ether,’ again 
points to Brahman, and so likewise the phrase, ‘Ether is 
greater than these, ether is their rest ; ’ for absolute supe- 
riority in point of greatness Scripture attributes to the 
highest Self only; cp. Kh. Up. Ill, 14, 3, ‘Greater than 
the earth, greater than the sky, greater than heaven, greater 
than all these worlds.’ The quality of being a place of rest 
likewise agrees best with the highest Brahman, on account 
of its being the highest cause. This is confirmed by the 
following scriptural passage : ‘ Knowledge and bliss is Brah- 
man, it is the rest of him who gives gifts ’ (Brf. Up. Ill, 9, a8). 
Moreover, 6^aivali finding fault with the doctrine of S'ala- 
vatya, on account of (his saman) having an end {Kh. Up. I, 
8, 8), and wishing to proclaim something that has no end 
chooses the ether, and then, having identified the ether with 
the Udgitha, concludes, ‘He is the Udgitha greater than 
gieat; he is without end.' Now this endlessness is a 
chaiacteristic mark of Brahman. To the remark that 
the sense of ‘elemental ether’ presents itself to the mind 
more readily, because it is the better established sense of 
the word akdi'a, we reply, that, although it may present 
itself to the mind first, yet it is not to be accepted, because 
we see that qualities of Brahman are mentioned in the com- 
plementaiy sentences. That the word aka^a is also used 
to denote Brahman has been shown already; cp. such 
passages as, ‘ Ether is the revealer of all names and forms.’ 
We see, moreover, that various synonyma of Aka.ra are 
employed to denote Brahman. So, for instance, Afk 



84 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


I, 164, 39, ‘In which the Vedas are^, in the Imperishable 
one (i. e. Brahman), the highest, the ether (vyoman), on 
which all gods have their seat.’ And Taitt. Up. Ill, 6 , 
‘ This is the knowledge of Bhrfgu and Varu^a, founded on 
the highest ether (vyoman).’ And again, ‘ Om, ka is Brah- 
man, ether (kha) is Brahman’ {K/i. Up. IV, 10, 5), and ‘the 
old ether’ (Bn. Up. V, i)^. And other similar passages. 
On account of the force of the complementary passage we 
are justified in deciding that the word ‘ether,’ although 
occurring in the beginning of the passage, refers to Brahman. 
The case is analogous to that of the sentence, ‘Agni (lit. 
the fire) studies a chapter,’ where the word agni, although 
occurring in the beginning, is at once seen to denote a boy 
It is therefore settled that the word ‘ ether ’ denotes Brahman. 

23. For the same reason breath (is Brahman). 

Concerning the udgitha it is said {K/i. Up. I, 10, 9), 
‘ Prastotrf, that deity which belongs to the prastava, &c.,’ 
and, further on (I, ii, 4 ; 5), ‘ Which then is that deity ? He 
said : Breath. For all these beings merge into breath alone, 
and from breath they arise. This is the deity belonging to 
the prastava.’ With reference to this passage doubt and 
decision are to be considered as analogous to those stated 
under the preceding Sutra. For while in some passages — as, 
for instance, ‘ For indeed, my son, mind is fastened to pra«a,’ 
K/i. Up. VI, 8, %\ and, ‘the prawaof pr&.«a,’ B/V. Up. IV, 4, 
18 — the word ‘breath’ is seen to denote Brahman, its use 


^ Viz. as intimating it. Thus An. Gi. and Go. An. against the 
accent of rikih. Saya?/a explains riki.h as genitive. 

® Owkarasya pratikatvena vaiakatvena lakshakatvena vS brah- 
matvam uktam, om iti, kaz'^ sukhawz tasy 3 .rthendriyayoga^atvaOT 
varayitu//i kham iti, tasya bhutdka^atva?« vydseddhum pura^/am ity 
uktam. An. Gi. 

® The doubt about the meaning of a word is preferably to be 
decided by means of a reference to preceding passages ; where that 
is not possible (the doubtful word occurring at the beginning of 
some new chapter) complementary, i. e. subsequent passages have 
to be taken into consideration. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 2 3 . 


S5 


in the sense of a certain modification of air is better estab- 
lished in common as well as in Vedic language. Hence 
there arises a doubt whether in the passage under dis- 
cussion the word pra;/a denotes Brahman or (ordinary) 
breath. In favour of which meaning have we then to 
decide ? 

Here the purvapakshin maintains that the word must be 
held to denote the fivefold vital breath, which is a peculiar 
modification of wind (or air) ; because, as has been re- 
marked already, that sense of the word pra7^a is the better 
established one. — But no, an objector will say, just as in the 
case of the preceding Sutra, so here also Brahman is meant, 
on account of characteristic marks being mentioned; for 
here also a complementary passage gives us to understand 
that all beings spring from and merge into prana; a process 
which can take place in connexion with the highest Lord 
only.— This objection, the purvapakshin replies, is futile, 
since we see that the beings enter into and proceed from 
the principal vital air also. For Scripture makes the fol- 
lowing statement (6'at. Br. X, 3, 3, 6), ‘ When man sleeps, 
then into breath indeed speech merges, into breath the eye] 
into breath the ear, into breath the mind ; when he awakes 
then they spring again from breath alone.’ What the Veda 
here states is, m.oreover, a matter of observation, for during 
sleep, while the process of breathing goes on uninterruptedly, 
the activity of the sense organs is interrupted and again 
becomes manifest at the time of awaking only. And as the 
sense organs are the essence of all material beings, the com- 
plementary passage which speaks of the merging and 
emerging of the beings can be reconciled with the principal 
vital ^ air also. Moreover^ subsequently to prd^^a being 
mentioned as the divinity of the prastava the sun and food 
are designated as the divinities of the udgitha and the 
pratihara. Now as they are not Brahman, the prA^m also, 
by parity of reasoning, cannot be Brahman. 

To this argumentation the author of the Sutras replies • 
For the same reason pra;^a-that means : on account of 
the presence of characteristic marks— which constituted the 
reason stated in the preceding Sfitra— the word pr^na also 



86 


VEDANTA'SUTRAS, 


must be held to denote Brahman. For Scripture says of 
pra/^a also, that it is connected with marks characteristic 
of Brahman. The sentence, ‘All these beings merge into 
breath alone, and from breath they arise,’ which declares 
that the origination and retractation of all beings depend on 
pr^;^a, clearly shows prawato be Brahman. In reply to the 
assertion that the origination and retractation of all beings can 
be reconciled equally well with the assumption of pra«a de- 
noting the chief vital air, because origination and retractation 
take place in the state of waking and of sleep also, we remark 
that in those two states only the senses are merged into, and 
emerge from, the chief vital air, while, according to the 
scriptural passage, ‘ For all these beings, &c./ all beings 
whatever into which a living Self has entered, together with 
their senses and bodies, merge and emerge by turns. And 
even if the word ‘ beings ’ were taken (not in the sense of 
animated beings, but) in the sense of material elements in 
general, there would be nothing in the way of interpreting 
the passage as referring to Brahman. — But, it may be said, 
that the senses together with their objects do, during sleep, 
enter into pra«a, and again issue from it at the time of 
waking, we distinctly learn from another scriptural passage, 
viz. Kau. Up. Ill, 3, ‘ When a man being thus asleep sees 
no dream whatever, he becomes one with that pvaua. alone. 
Then speech goes to him with all names/ &c. — True, we 
reply, but there also the word prd;za denotes (not the vital 
air) but Brahman, as we conclude from characteristic marks 
of Brahman being mentioned. The objection, again, that 
the word pra/?a cannot denote Brahman because it occurs 
in proximity to the words ‘ food ’ and ‘ sun ’ (which do not 
refer to Brahman), is altogether baseless; for proximity is 
of no avail against the force of the complementary passage 
which intimates that pra;za is Brahman. That argument, 
finally, which rests on the fact that the word pra?^a com- 
monly denotes the vital air with its five modifications, is to 
be refuted in the same way as the parallel argument which 
the purvapakshin brought forward with reference to the 
word ‘ ether.’ From all this it follows that the praua., which 
is the deity of the prastava, is Brahman. 



I adiiyAya, I pAda, 24. 


87 


Some (commentators) ^ quote under the present Shtra the 
following passages, ‘thepra^aof pra/^a’ (Brz. Up. IV, 4, 18), 
and ‘for to pra«a mind is fastened ' (K/i. Up. VI, 8 , 3). But 
that is wrong since these two passages offer no opportunity 
for any discussion, the former on account of the separation 
of the words, the latter on account of the general topic. 
When we meet with a phrase such as ‘the father of the 
father ’ we understand at once that the genitive denotes a 
father different from the father denoted by the nominative. 
Analogously we infer from the separation of words con- 
tained in the phrase, ‘ the breath of breath,’ that the ‘ breath 
of breath’ is different from the ordinary breath (denoted 
by the genitive ‘ of breath ’). For one and the same thing 
cannot, by means of a genitiv^e, be predicated of — and thus 
distinguished from — itself. Concerning the second passage 
we remark that, if the matter constituting the general topic 
of some chapter is referred to in that chapter under 
a different name, we yet conclude, from the general topic, 
that that special matter is meant. For instance, when we 
meet in the section which treats of the ^yotishifoma sacrifice 
with the passage, ‘ in every spring he is to offer the ^yotis 
sacrifice,’ we at once understand that the word ^otis 
denotes the ^yotish^oma. If we therefore meet with the 
clause ‘to prana, mind is fastened’ in a section of which 
the highest Brahman is the topic, we do not for a moment 
suppose that the word pri/^a should there denote the 
ordinary breath which is a mere modification of air. The 
two passages thus do not offer any matter for discussion, 
and hence do not furnish appropriate instances for the 
Sutra. We have shown, on the other hand, that the 
passage about the prana, which is the deity of the prastfiva, 
allows room for doubt, purvapaksha and final decision. 

24. The ‘light’ (is Brahman), on account of the 
mention of feet (in a passage which is connected 
with the passage about the light). 

Scripture says {K/i. Up. Ill, 13, 7), ‘ Now that light which 
shines above this heaven, higher than all, higher than every- 

say. 


^ The vn'ttikara, the commentators 



88 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


thing, in the highest worlds beyond which there are no 
other worlds that is the same light which is within man/ 
Here the doubt presents itself whether the word ‘light’ 
denotes the light of the sun and the like, or the highest 
Self. Under the preceding Sutras we had shown that some 
words which ordinarily have different meanings yet in 
certain passages denote Brahman, since characteristic marks 
of the latter are mentioned. Here the question has to be 
discussed whether, in connexion with the passage quoted, 
characteristic marks of Brahman are mentioned or not. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the word ‘light’ de- 
notes nothing else but the light of the sun and the like, since 
that is the ordinary well-established meaning of the term. 
The common use of language, he says, teaches us that the 
two words ‘ light ’ and ‘ darkness ’ denote mutually opposite 
things, darkness being the term for whatever interferes with 
the function of the sense of sight, as, for instance, the gloom 
of the night, while sunshine and whatever else favours the 
action of the eye is called light. The word ‘shines’ also, 
which the text exhibits, is known ordinarily to refer to the 
sun and similar sources of light ; while of Brahman, which 
is devoid of colour, it cannot be said, in the primary sense 
of the word, that it ^shines.’ Further, the word ^yotis 
must here denote light because it is said to be bounded by 
the sky (‘that light which shines above this heaven’). 
For while it is impossible to consider the sky as being the 
boundary of Brahman, which is the Self of all and the 
source of all things movable or immovable, the sky may 
be looked upon as forming the boundary of light, which is 
a mere product and as such limited ; accordingly the text 
says, ‘the light beyond heaven.’ — But light, although a 
mere product, is perceived everywhere; it would therefore 
be wrong to declare that it is bounded by the sky ! — Well, 
then, the purvapakshin replies, let us assume that the light 
meant is the first-born (original) light which has not yet 
become tripartite^. This explanation again cannot be 


^ I. e. which has not been mixed with water and earth, according 
to Kh. Up. VI, 3, 3. Before that mixture took place light was 



I adhyAya, I pIda, 24. 


89 


admitted, because the non-tripartite light does not serve 
any purpose. — But, the purvapakshin resumes, Why should 
its purpose not be found therein that it is the object of 
devout meditation ? — That cannot be, we reply ; for w’e see 
that only such things are represented as objects of devotion 
as have some other independent use of their own; so, for 
instance, the sun (which dispels darkness and so on). More- 
over the scriptural passage, ‘ Let me make each of these 
three (fire, water, and earth) tripartite,’ docs not indicate any 
difference h And even of the non-tripartite light it is not 
known that the sky constitutes its boundary. — Well, then 
(the purvapakshin resumes, dropping the idea of the non- 
tripartite light), let us assume that the light of which the 
text speaks is the tripartite (ordinary) light. The objection 
that light is seen to exist also beneath the sky, viz. in the 
form of fire and the like, we invalidate by the remark that 
there is nothing contrary to reason in assigning a special 
locality to fire, although the latter is observed everywhere ; 
while to assume a special place for Brahman, to which the 
idea of place does not apply at all, would be most un- 
suitable. Moreover, the clause ‘ higher than everything, in 
the highest worlds beyond which there are no other worlds,’ 
which indicates a multiplicity of abodes, agrees much better 
with light, which is a mere product (than with Brahman). 
There is moreover that other clause also, ‘ That is the same 
light which is within man,’ in which the highest light is 
identified with the gastric fire (the fire within man). Now 
such identifications can be made only where there is a 
certain similarity of nature ; as is seen, for instance, in the 
passage, ‘ Of that person Bhu/i is the head, for the head is 
one and that syllable is one ’ (Bri Up. V, 5, 3). But that 
the fire witliin the human body is not Brahman clearly 
appears from the passage, ‘Of this we have visible and 
audible proof' {Kk Up. Ill, 13, 7 ; 8), which declares that 


entirely separated from the other elements, and therefore bounded 
by the latter. 

' So as to justify the assumption that such a thing as non-tri- 
partite light exists at all. 



go 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


the fire is characterised by the noise it makes, and by heat ; 
and likewise from the following- passage, ‘ Let a man 
meditate on this as that which is seen and heard.’ The 
same conclusion may be drawn from the passage, ‘ He who 
knows this becomes conspicuous and celebrated,’ which 
proclaims an inconsiderable reward only, while to the 
devout meditation on Brahman a high reward would have 
to be allotted. Nor is there mentioned in the entire 
passage about the light any other characteristic mark of 
Brahman, while such marks are set forth in the passages 
(discussed above) which refer to pra«a and the ether. Nor, 
again, is Brahman indicated in the preceding section, ‘ the 
Giyatri is everything whatsoever exists,’ &c. (Ill, 12); for 
that passage makes a statement about the Giyatri metre 
only. And even if that section did refer to Brahman, still 
Brahman Would not be recognised in the passage at present 
under discussion; for there (in the section referred to) it is 
declared — in the clause, ‘ Three feet of it are the Immortal 
in heaven ’ — that heaven constitutes the abode ; while in 
our passage the words ‘ the light above heaven ’ declare 
heaven to be a boundary. For all these reasons the word 
^yotis is here to be taken in its ordinary meaning, viz. 
light 

To this we make the following reply. The word ^otis 
must be held to denote Brahman. Why ? On account of 
the feet (quarters) being mentioned. In a preceding 
passage Brahman had been spoken of as having four feet 
(quarters). ‘Such is the greatness of it; greater than it is 
the Person (purusha). One foot of it are all the beings, 
three feet of it are the Immortal in heaven.’ That which in 
this passage is said to constitute the three-quarter part, 
immortal and connected with heaven, of Brahman, which 
altogether comprises four quarters ; this very same entity 
we recognise as again referred to in the passage under 
discussion, because there also it is said to be connected 
with heaven. If therefore we should set it aside in our 
interpretation of the passage and assume the latter to refer 
to the ordinary light, -we should commit the mistake of 
dropping, without need, the topic started and introducing 



I ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 24. 


91 


a new subject. Brahman, in fact, continues to form the 
subject-matter, not only of the passage about the light, but 
likewise of the subsequent section, the so-called 6'a7Z^/ilya- 
vidya {Kh. Up. Ill, 14). Hence we conclude that in our 
passage the word ‘ light ’ must be held to denote Brahman. 
The objection (raised above) that from common use the 
words ‘light ’and ‘to shine’ are known to denote effected 
(physical) light is without force ; for as it is known from 
the general topic of the chapter that Brahman is meant, 
those two words do not necessarily denote physical light 
only to the exclusion of Brahman \ but may also denote 
Brahman itself, in so far as it is characterised by the 
physical shining light which is its effect. Analogously 
another mantra declares, ‘ that by which the sun shines 
kindled with heat’ (Taitt. Br. Ill, 12, 9, 7). Or else we 
may suppose that the word^yotis here does not denote at 
all that light on which the function of the eye depends. 
For we see that in other passages it has altogether different 
meanings ; so, for instance, Bn. Up. IV, 3, 5, ‘ With speech 
only as light man sits,’ and Taitt. Sa. I, 6, 3, 3, ‘ May the 
mind, the light, accept,’ &c. It thus appears that whatever 
illuminates (in the different senses of the word) something 
else may be spoken of as ‘ light’ Hence to Brahman also, 
whose nature is intelligence, the term Might’ may be 
applied ; for it gives light to the entire world. Similarly, 
other scriptural passages say, ‘ Him the shining one, every- 
thing shines after ; by his light all this is lighted ’ (Kau. Up. 

^ ^ 5 ) 15 ) and ‘ Him the gods worship as, the light of 
lights, as die immortal’ {Bri. Up. IV, 4, 16). Against the 
furthei objection that the omnipresent Brahman cannot be 
viewed as bounded by heaven we remark that the assign- 
ment, to Brahman, of a special locality is not contrary to 
reason because it subserves the purpose of devout medita- 
tion. ^ Nor does it avail anything to say that it is impo.ssible 
to assign any place to Brahman because Brahman is out of 
connexion with all place. For it is possible to make such 


^ Brahma?/o vyavaXd-/adya te^o-a/zsamarpakalva?^ vijeshakatvam 
tadabhavo^vi^eshakatvam. An. Gi. ’ 



92 


VEDANTA'SOtRAS, 


an assumption, because Brahman is connected with certain 
limiting adj uncts. Accordingly S cripture speaks of d ifferent 
kinds of devout meditation on Brahman as specially con- 
nected with certain localities, such as the sun, the eye, the 
heart. For the same reason it is also possible to attribute 
to Brahman a multiplicity of abodes, as is done in the 
clause (quoted above) ‘higher than all.’ The further ob- 
jection that the light beyond heaven is the mere physical 
light because it is identified with the gastric fire, which 
itself is a mere effect and is inferred from perceptible marks 
such as the heat of the body and a certain sound, is equally 
devoid of force ; for the gastric fire may be viewed as the 
outward appearance (or symbol) of Brahman, just as Brah- 
man’s name is a mere outward symbol. Similarly in the 
passage, ‘ Let a man meditate on it (the gastric light) as 
seen and heard,’ the visibility and audibility (here implicitly 
ascribed to Brahman) must be considered as rendered 
possible through the gastric fire being the outward appear- 
ance of Brahman. Nor is there any force in the objection 
that Brahman cannot be meant because the text mentions 
an inconsiderable reward only ; for there is no reason com- 
pelling us to have recourse to Brahman for the purpose 
of such and such a reward only, and not for the purpose of 
such and such another reward. Wherever the text represents 
the highest Brahman — which is free from all connexion 
with distinguishing attributes — as the universal Self, it is 
understood that the result of that instruction is one only, 
viz. final release. Wherever, on the other hand, Brahman 
is taught to be connected with distinguishing attributes or 
'outward symbols, there, we see, all the various rewards 
which this world can offer are spoken of ; cp. for instance, 
Bn. IJp. IV, 4, 34, ‘ This is he who eats all food, the giver 
of wealth. He who knows this obtains wealth.’ Although 
in the passage itself which treats of the light no charac- 
teristic mark of Brahman is mentioned, yet, as the Sfitra 
intimates, the mark stated in a preceding passage (viz. the 
mantra, ‘ Such is the greatness of it,’ &c.) has to be taken 
in connexion with the passage about the light as well. 
The question how the mere circumstance of Brahman being 



I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 25. 


93 


mentioned in a not distant passage can have the power 
of divorcing from its natural object and transferring to 
another object the direct statement about light implied in 
the word ‘ light,’ may be answered without difficulty. The 
passage under discussion runs ‘ which above this heaven, 
the light.’ The relative pronoun with which this clause 
begins intimates, according to its grammatical forced the 
same Brahman which was mentioned in the previous 
passage, and which is here recognised (as being the same 
which was mentioned before) through its connexion with 
heaven ; hence the word ^yotis also — which stands in 
grammatical co-ordination to ‘ which ’ — must have Brahman 
for its object. From all this it follows that the word 
‘ light ’ here denotes Brahman. 

25. If it be objected that (Brahman is) not (denoted) 
on account of the metre being denoted ; (we reply) 
not so, because thus (i. e. by means of the metre) the 
direction of the mind (on Brahman) is declared ; for 
thus it is seen (in other passages also). 

We now address ourselves to the refutation of the asser- 
tion (made in the ptirvapaksha of the preceding Sutra) that 
in the previous passage also Brahman is not referred to, 
because in the sentence, ‘ Gayatri is everything whatsoever 
here exists,’ the metre called Gayatri is spoken of. — How 
(we ask the purvapakshin) can it be maintained that, on 
account of the metre being spoken of, Brahman is not 
denoted, while yet the mantra ‘such is the greatness of 
it, &c., clearly sets forth Brahman with its four quarters? 

You are mistaken (the purvapakshin replies). The 
sentence, ‘Gdyatri is everything,’ starts the discussion of 
Gayatri. The same Gayatri is thereupon described under 
the various forms of all beings, earth, body, heart, speech, 
breath; to which there refers also the verse, ‘that Gayatri 


^ If we strictly follow the order of words in the original. 
Svasamarthyena sarvandmna-^ sannihitapardmardtvavajena. 


94 


VEDANTA-st)TRAS. 


has four feet and is sixfold.’ After that we meet with the 
mantra, ‘ Such is the greatness of it,’ &c. How then, we 
ask, should this mantra, which evidently is quoted with 
reference to the Giyatri (metre) as described in the preceding 
clauses, all at once denote Brahman with its four quarters ? 
Since therefore the metre Gayatid is the subject-matter of 
the entire chapter, the term ‘ Brahman ’ which occurs in a 
subsequent passage the Brahman which has thus been 
described ’) must also denote the metre. This is analogous 
to a previous passage (K/i. Up. Ill, ii, 3, ‘He who thus 
knows this Brahma-upanishad ’), where the word Brahma- 
upanishad is explained to mean Veda-upanishad. As 
therefore the preceding passage refers (not to Brahman, 
but) to the Gayatri metre, Brahman does not constitute the 
topic of the entire section. 

This argumentation, we reply, proves nothing against our 
position. ‘ Because thus direction of the mind is declared,’ 
i. e. because the Brahmawa passage, ‘ Gdyatri indeed is all 
this,’ intimates that by means of the metre Gayatri the mind 
is to be directed on Brahman which is connected with that 
metre. Of the metre Gdyatri, which is nothing but a certain 
special combination of syllables, it could not possibly be said 
that it is the Self of everything. We therefore have to 
understand the passage as declaring that Brahman, which, as 
the cause of the world, is connected with that product also 
whose name is Gayatri, is ‘ all this ; ’ in accordance with that 
other passage which directly says, ‘All this indeed is 
Brahman’ [Kk. Up. Ill, 14, i). That the effect is in 
reality not different from the cause, we shall prove later on, 
under Sutra II, i, 14. Devout meditation on Brahman under 
the form of certain effects (of Brahman) is seen to be men- 
tioned in other passages also, so, for instance, Ait. Ar. Ill, 
a, 3, la, ‘For the Bahvrf/^as consider him in the great 
hymn, the Adhvaryus in the sacrificial fire, the A’/^andogas 
in the Mahivrata ceremony.’ Although, therefore, the 
previous passage speaks of the metre, Brahman is what is 
meant, and the same Brahman is again referred to in the 
passage about the light, whose purport it is to enjoin 
another form of devout meditation. 


I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 26. 


95 


Another commentator^ is of opinion that the term 
Gayatri (does not denote Brahman in so far as viewed under 
the form of Gayatri, but) directly denotes Brahman, on 
account of the equality of number ; for just as the Gdyatri 
metre has four feet consisting of six syllables each, so 
Brahman also has four feet, (i. e. quarters.) Similarly we 
see that in other passages also the names of metres are used 
to denote other things which resemble those metres in 
certain numerical relations ; cp. for instance, Kh, Up. IV, 
3, 8, where it is said at first, ‘Now these five and the 
other five make ten and that is the Krfta,’ and after that 
‘these are again the Vir^^ which eats the food.’ If we 
adopt this interpretation. Brahman only is spoken of, and 
the metre is not referred to at all. In any case Brahman is 
the subject with which the previous passage is concerned. 

26. And thus also (we must conclude, viz. that 
Brahman is the subject of the previous passage), be- 
cause (thus only) the declaration as to the beings, 
&:c, being the feet is possible. 

That the previous passage has Brahman for its topic, we 
must assume for that reason also that the text designates 
the beings and so on as the feet of Gayatri. For the text 
at first speaks of the beings, the earth, the body, and the 
heai t and then goes on ‘ that Gdyatri has four feet and is 
sixfold. For of the mere metre, without any reference to 
Brahman, it would be impossible to say that the beings and 
so on are its feet. Moreover, if Brahman were not meant, 
there would be no room for the verse, ‘ Such is the great- 
ness, &c. For that verse clearly describes Brahman in its 
own nature; otherwise it would be impossible to represent 
the Gayatri as the Self of everything as is done in the words, 

‘ One foot of it are all the beings ; three feet of it are what 
is immortal in heaven.’ The purusha-sukta also (i?2k 

^ The vr/tuMra according to Go. An. in his /ikd on the bh^shya 
to the next Sutra. ^ 

interpretation, cp. 




96 


VEDANTA-S0TRAS. 


Sawh. X, 90) exhibits the verse with sole reference to 
Brahman. Smr/ti likewise ascribes to Brahman a like 
nature, ‘ I stand supporting all this world by a single portion 
of myself' (Bha. Gita X, 43). Our interpretation moreover 
enables us to take the passage, ‘that Brahman indeed 
which,’ &c. (Ill, 12, 7), in its primary sense, (i. e. to under- 
stand the word Brahman to denote nothing but Brahman.) 
And, moreover, the passage, ‘these are the five men of 
Brahman’ (III, 13, 6), is appropriate only if the former 
passage about the Giyatri is taken as referring to Brahman 
(for otherwise the ‘ Brahman ’ in ‘ men of Brahman ' would 
not be connected with the previous topic). Hence Brahman 
is to be considered as the subject-matter of the previous 
passage also. And the decision that the same Brahman is 
referred to in the passage about the light where it is recog- 
nised (to be the same) from its connexion with heaven, 
remains unshaken. 

27. The objection that (the Brahman of the former 
passage cannot be recognised in the latter) on account 
of the difference of designation, is not valid because 
in either (designation) there is nothing contrary (to 
the recognition). 

The objection that in the former passage (‘ three feet of 
it are what is immortal in heaven '), heaven is designated 
as the abode, while in the latter passage (‘ that light which 
shines above this heaven’), heaven is designated as the 
boundary, and that, on account of this -difference of desig- 
nation, the subject-matter of the former passage cannot be 
recognised in the latter, must likewise be refuted. This we 
do by remarking that in either designation nothing is 
contrary to the recognition. Just as in ordinary language 
a falcon, although in contact with the top of a tree, is not 
only said to be on the tree but also above the tree, so 
Brahman also, although being in heaven, is here referred to 
as being beyond heaven as well. 

Another (commentator) explains: just as in ordinary 
language a falcon, although not in contact with the top of a 



I ADHYAyA, I PADA, 28. 


97 


tree, is not only said to be above the top of the tree but also 
on the top of the tree, so Brahman also, which is in reality 
beyond heaven, is (in the former of the two passages) said 
to be in heaven. Therefore the Brahman spoken of in the 
former passage can be recognised in the latter also, and it 
remains therefore a settled conclusion that the word ‘ light ’ 
denotes Brahman. 

28. Pray^a (breath) is Brahman, that being under- 
stood from a connected consideration (of the passages 
referring to pfa;?a). 

In the Kaushitaki-brihma;>2a-upanishad there is recorded 
a legend of Indra and Pratardana which begins with the 
words, ‘ Pratardana, forsooth, the son of Divodasa came by 
means of fighting and strength to the beloved abode of 
Indra’ (Kau. Up. Ill, i). In this legend we read: ‘He 
said: I am pra/za, the intelligent Self (prag;2atman), medi- 
tate on me as Life, as Immortality’ (III, 2). And later on 
(III, 3), ‘Pra//a alone, the intelligent Self, having laid hold 
of this body, makes it rise up.’ Then, again (III, 8), ‘Let 
no man try to find out what speech is, let him know the 
speaker.’ And in the end (III, 8), ‘That breath indeed is 
the intelligent Self, bliss, imperishable, immortal.’ — Here the 
doubt presents itself whether the word pra;2a denotes 
merely breath, the modification of air, or the Self of some 
divinity, or the individual soul, or the highest Brahman. — 
But, it will be said at the outset, the Sutra I, i, 31 already 
has shown that the word pra22a refers to Brahman, and as 
here also we meet with characteristic marks of Brahman, viz. 
the words ‘bliss, imperishable, immortal,’ what reason is there 
for again raising the same doubt ? — We reply : Because there 
are observed here characteristic marks of different kinds. 
For in the legend we meet not only with marks indicating 
Brahman, but also with marks pointing to other beings. 
Thus Indra’s words, ‘Know me only’ (III, i), point to the 
Self of a divinity ; the words, ‘ Having laid hold of this 
body it makes it rise up,’ point to the breath ; the words, 

‘ Let no man try to find out what speech is, let him know 
[34] H 



98 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


the speaker/ point to the individual soul. There is thus 
room for doubt. 

If, now, the phrvapakshin maintains that the term pra«a 
here denotes the well-known modification of air, i. e. breath, 
we, on our side, assert that the word pra72a must be under- 
stood to denote Brahman. — For what reason? — On account 
of such being the consecutive meaning of the passages. 
For if we examine the connexion of the entire section 
which treats of the pra«a, we observe that all the single 
passages can be construed into a whole only if they are 
viewed as referring to Brahman. At the beginning of the 
legend Pratardana, having been allowed by Indra to choose 
a boon, mentions the highest good of man, which he 
selects for his boon, in the following words, ‘ Do you your- 
self choose that boon for me which you deem most beneficial 
for a man.’ Now, as later on pra«a is declared to be what 
is most beneficial for man, what should prd; 2 a denote but 
the highest Self? For apart from the cognition of that 
Self a man cannot possibly attain what is most beneficial 
for him, as many scriptural passages declare. Compare, for 
instance, Sve. Up. Ill, 8, ‘ A man who knows him passes 
over death ; there is no other path to go.’ Again, the 
further passage, ‘ He who knows me thus by no deed of his 
is his life harmed, not by theft, not by bhrfi? 2 ahatyd ’ (III. i), 
has a meaning only if Brahman is supposed to be the object 
of knowledge. For, that subsequently to the cognition of 
Brahman all works and their effects entirely cease, is well 
known from scriptural passages, such as the following, ‘ All 
works perish when he has been beheld who is the higher 
and the lower’ (Mu. Up. II, 2, 8). Moreover, pik«a can 
be identified with the intelligent Self only if it is Brahman. 
For the air which is non-intelligent can clearly not be the 
intelligent Self. Those characteristic marks, again, which 
are mentioned in the concluding passage (viz. those inti- 
mated by the words ‘ bliss/ ‘ imperishable/ ‘ immortal ’) can, 
if taken in their full sense, not be reconciled with any being 
except Brahman. There are, moreover, the following 
passages, ‘ He does not increase by a good action, nor de- 
crease by a bad action. For he makes him whom he wishes 



I ADHYIyA. I PADA, 29 . 


99 


to lead up from these worlds do a good deed ; and the same 
makes him whom he wishes to lead down from these worlds 
do a bad deed ; ’ and, ‘ He is the guardian of the world, he 
is the king of the world, he is the Lord of the world ’ (Kau. 
Up. Ill, 8). All this can be properly understood only if the 
highest Brahman is acknowledged to be the subject-matter 
of the whole chapter, not if the vital air is substituted in its 
place. Hence the word pra?m denotes Brahman. 

29. If it be said that (Brahman is) not (denoted) 
on account of the speaker denoting himself; (we 
reply that this objection is not valid) because there 
is in that (chapter) a multitude of references to the 
interior Self. 

An objection is raised against the assertion that pra.ua de- 
notes Brahman. The word pra/^a, it is said, does not denote 
the highest Brahman, because the speaker designates him- 
self. The speaker, who is a certain powerful god called 
Indra, at first says, in order to reveal himself to Pratardana, 
‘ Know me only,’ and later on, ‘ I am the intelligent 

Self,’ How, it is asked, can the pr^i^a, which this latter 
passage, expressive of personality as it is, represents as the 
Self of the speaker, be Brahman to which, as we know from 
Scripture, the attribute of being a speaker cannot be 
ascribed; compare, for instance, Brz. Up, HI, 8, 8,‘ It is without 
speech, without mind.’ Further on, also, the speaker, i.e. 
Indra, glorifies himself by enumerating a number of attri- 
butes, all of which depend on personal existence and can in 
no way belong to Brahman, ‘ I slew the three-headed son 
of Tvash^'r^■; I delivered the Arunmukhas, the -devotees, to 
the wolves,’ and so on. Indra may be called pra? 2 a on 
account of his strength. Scripture says, ‘ Strength indeed 
is prd? 2 a,’ and Indra is known as the god of strength ; and 
of any deed of strength people say, ‘It is Indra’s work.’ 
The personal Self of a deity may, moreover, be called an 
intelligent Self ; for the gods, people say, possess unob- 
structed knowledge. It thus being a settled matter that 
some passages convey information about the personal Self 

H 2 



lOO 


vedanta-sOtras. 


of some deity, the other passages also — as, for instance, the 
one about what is most beneficial for man — must be inter- 
preted as well as they may with reference to the same deity. 
Hence prana, does not denote Brahman. 

This objection we refute by the remark that in that 
chapter there are found a multitude of references to the in- 
terior Self. For the passage, ‘ As long as pri;^a dwells in this 
body so long surely there is life,’ declares that that prana. 
only which is the intelligent interior Self — and not some 
particular outward deity — has power to bestow and to take 
back life. And where the text speaks of the eminence of 
the pr^7^as as founded on the existence of the prt^ia, it 
shows that that prk?ia is meant which has reference to the 
Self and is the abode of the sense-organs k 

Of the same tendency is the passage, ‘ Prdwa, the intel- 
ligent Self, alone having laid hold of this body makes it rise 
up ; ’ and the passage (which occurs in the passus, ‘ Let no 
man try to find out what speech is,’ &c.), ‘ For as in a car 
the circumference of the wheel is set on the spokes and the 
spokes on the nave, thus are these objects set on the subjects 
(the senses) and the subjects on the priwa. And that 
pra;2a indeed is the Self of pragna^ blessed, imperishable, 
immortal.’ So also the following passage which, referring 
to this interior Self, forming as it were the centre of the 
peripherical interaction of the objects and senses, sums up 
as follows, ‘ He is my Self, thus let it be known ; ’ a summing 
up which is appropriate only if prkna is meant to denote 
not some outward existence, but the interior Self, And 
another scriptural passage declares ‘this Self is Brahman, 
omniscient^’ {Bri. Up. II, 5, 19), We therefore arrive at 


^ The text runs, ‘ astitve ka prhianitii ni/m'eyasam,’ and Go. An. 
explains ‘astitve pranasthitau pranaaam indriya«am sthitir ity 
arthata^ n'utim aha.’ He as well as An. Gi. quotes as the text of 
the scriptural passage referred to ‘ ath^to ni/2jreyasidanam ity ^di.’ 
But if instead of ‘ astitve ka ’ we read ‘ asti tv eva,’ we get the con- 
cluding clause of Kau, Up. Ill, 2, as given in Cowell’s edition. 

® Whence we know that the interior Self referred to in the 
Kau. Up. is Brahman. 



I ADIIYAYA, I PADA, 3O. 


JOI 


the conclusion that, on account of the multitude of references 
to the interior Self, the chapter contains information regard- 
ing' Brahman, not regarding the Self of some deity.— How- 
then can the circumstance of the speaker (Indra) referring 
to himself be explained ? 

30. The declaration (made by Indra about himself, 
viz. that he is one with Brahman) (is possible) through 
intuition vouched for by Scripture, as in the case of 
V amadeva. 

The individual divine Self called Indra perceiving by 
means of rzshi-like intuition ^ — the existence of which is 
vouched for by Scripture — its own Self to be identical with 
the supreme Self, instructs Pratardana (about the highest 
Self) by means of the words ' Know me only.’ 

By intuition of the same kind the rfshi Vamadeva reached 
the knowledge expressed in the words, ‘ I was Manu and 
Surya ; ’ in accordance with the passage, ‘ Whatever deva was 
awakened (so as to know Brahman) he indeed became that ’ 
(Bn. Up, I, 4, xo). The assertion made above (in the 
phrvapaksha of the preceding Sutra) that Indra after saying, 

‘ Know me only,’ glorifies himself by enumerating the slaying 
of Tvash/n’s son and other deeds of strength, we refute as 
follows. The death of Tvashifn’s son and similar deeds are 
referred to, not to the end of glorifying Indra as the object 
of knowledge in which case the sense of the passage would 
be, Because I accomplished such and such deeds, therefore 
know me’ but to the end of glorifying the cognition of the 
highest Self. For this reason the text, after having referred 
to the slaying of Tvash^'rz ’s son and the like, goes on in the 
clause next following to exalt knowledge, ‘And not one 
hair of me is harmed there. He who knows me thus by no 
deed of his is his life harmed.’ — (But how does this passage 
convey praise of knowledge?) — Because, we reply, its 
meaning is as follows ; ‘ Although I do such cruel deeds, 


^ he* spontaneous intuition of supersensible truth, rendered 
possible through the knowledge acquired in former existences. 



102 


VEidXTA-stTHAS. 


yet iM«t e-vcn a h;iir of mine is harmed because I am one 
with r.rahman; lliciehae the life of any other person also 
who knows me thus is not harmed by any deed of his.’ 
j\nd the object of the knowledge (praised by Indra) is 
nothing ek-c but Brahman which is set forth in a subsequent 
passage, ‘I am prawa, the intelligent Self.’ Therefore the 
entire chapter refers to Brahman. 

31. If it be said (that Brahman is) not (meant), on 
account of characteristic marks of the individual soul 
and the chief vital air (being mentioned) ; we say no, 
on account of the threefoldness of devout meditation 
(which would result from your interpretation) ; on 
account of (the meaning- advocated by us) being ac- 
cepted (elsewhere) ; and on account of (characteristic 
marks of Brahman) being connected (with the pas- 
sage under discussion). 

Although we admit, the purvapakshin resumes, that the 
chapter about the pra;/a does not furnish any instruction 
regarding some outward deity, since it contains a multitude 
of reforenccs to the interior Self ; still w'c deny that it is 
concerned with Brahman. — For what reason? — Because it 
mentions characteristic marks of the individual soul on the 
one hand, and of the chief vital air on the other hand. The 
passage, ‘ Let no man try to find out what speech is, let him 
know the speaker,’ mentions a characteristic mark of the 
individual soul, and must therefore be held to point 
out as the object of knowdedge the individual soul which 
rules and employs the different organs of action such as 
speech and so on. On the other hand, we have the passage, 

‘ But pra«a alone, the intelligent Self, having laid hold of 
this body makes it rise up,’ which points to the chief vital 
air ; for the chief attribute of the vital air is that it sustains 
the body. Similarly, we read in the colloquy of the vital 
airs (Bra. Up. II, 3), concerning speech and the other vital 
airs, ‘Then prawa (the chief vital air) as the best said to 
them : Be not deceived ; I alone dividing myself fivefold 
support this body and keep it.’ Those, again, who in the 



I ADIIVAVA, I rx\DA, 3 1. IO 3 

passage quoted above read ‘ this one (masc,), the body ^ ’ must 
give the following explanation, Pra^/a having laid hold of 
this one, viz. either the individual soul or the aggregate of 
the sense organs, makes the body rise up. The individual 
soul as well as the chief vital air may justly be designated 
as the intelligent Self; for the former is of the nature of 
intelligence, and the latter (although non-intelHgent in 
itself) is the abode of other pra?(!as, viz. the sense organs, 
which are the instruments of intelligence. Moreover, 
if the word pra?/a be taken to denote the individual 
soul as well as the chief vital air, the pvi/ia. and the 
intelligent Self may be spoken of in two ways, either as 
being non-different on account of their mutual concomit- 
ance, or as being different on account of their (essentially 
different) individual character; and in these two different 
ways they are actually spoken of in the two following 
passages, ‘ What is praua that is pra^/7a, what is pra^;H that 
is pra;/a ; * and, ‘ For together do these two live in the body 
and together do they depart.’ If, on the other hand, prd;^a 
denoted Brahman, what then could be different from what? 
For these reasons prawa does not denote Brahman, but 
either the individual soul or the chief vital air or both. 

All this argumentation, we reply, is wrong, ‘ on account 
of the threefoldness of devout meditation.’ Your inter- 
pretation would involve the assumption of devout medi- 
tation of three different kinds, viz. on the individual soul, 
on^the chief vital air, and on Brahman. But it is inap- 
propriate to assume that a single sentence should enjoin 
three kinds of devout meditation ; and that all the passages 
about the pra?/a really constitute one single sentence (one 
syntactical whole) appears from the beginning and the 
concluding part. In the beginning we have the clause 
‘ Know me only,’ followed by ‘ I am pra?^a, the intelligent 
Self, meditate on me as Life, as Immortality;’ and in 
the end we read, ‘And that praua indeed is the intelligent 
Self, blessed, imperishable, immortal.’ The beginning and 
the concluding part are thus seen to be similar, and we 


^ Imam rariram instead of idam raiiram 



therefore nnist cuiicluclc that they refer to one and the 
same matter. Nor can the characteristic mark of Brahman 
be so turned as to be applied to something else ; for the 
ten objects and the ten subjects (subjective powers) cannot 
rest on anything but Brahman. Moreover, pra«a must 
denote Brahman ‘on account of (that meaning) being 
accepted,’ i.e. because in the case of other passages where 
characteristic marks of Brahman are mentioned the word 
pra;/a is taken in the sense of ‘ Brahman,’ And another 
reason for assuming the passage to refer to Brahman is 
that here also, i.c. in the passage itself there is ‘ connexion ’ 
with characteri.stic marks of Brahman, as, for instance, the 
reference to wliat is most beneficial for man. The assertion 
that the passage, ‘ Having laid hold of this body it makes 
it lise up,’ contains a characteristic mark of the chief vital 
air, is untrue ; for as the function of the vital air also 
ultimately rests on Brahman it can figuratively be ascribed 
to the latter. So Scripture also declares, ‘ No mortal lives 
by the breath that goes up and by the breath that goes 
down. We live by another in whom these two repo,se’ 
(Ka. Up. 11, 5 , 5 ). Nor does the indication of the in- 
dividual soul which you allege to occur in the passage, 

‘ Let no man try to find out what speech is, let him know 
the speaker,’ preclude the view of pra;/a denoting Brahman. 
For, as the passages, ‘ I am Brahman,’ ‘ That art thou,’ and 
others, prove, there is in reality no such thing as an individual 
soul absolutely different from Brahman, but Brahman^ in 
so far as it differentiates itself through the mind (buddlii) 
and other limiting conditions, is called individual soul, 
agent, enjoyer. Such passages therefore as the one alluded 
to, (viz. ‘ let no man try to find out what speech is, let him 
know the speaker,’) which, by setting aside all the dif- 
ferences due to limiting conditions, aim at directing the 
mind on the internal Self and thus showing that the 


^ Pa;7/’a .rabdadaya/; pa;7/(’a p?-dhivyadaya.? Z’a da^-a 
pa«/’a buddhindriyd«i pau^’a buddhaya iti da^a pra;g'/7itmdtra//, 
Yadvit ,^v7unendriyarthS// pa;7X’a karmendriy^rthSj ia paw/f’eti daj-a 
bh(itamatr^/i dvividhdnindriySwi pra^w-^matrd da,reti bhIvaA. An. Gi. 



I ADHYAYA, I PADA, 3 I. *105 

individual soul is one with Brahman, are by no means out of 
place. That the Self which is active in speaking and the 
like is Brahman appears from another scriptural passage also, 
viz. Ke. Up. I, 5, ‘That w^hich is not expressed by speech 
and by which speech is expressed that alone know as 
Brahman, not that which people here adore.’ The remark 
that the statement about the difference of pra;?a and 
pra^wa (contained in the passage, ‘Together they dwell 
in this body, together they depart’) does not agree with 
that interpretation according to which prawa is Brahman, 
is without force ; for the mind and the vital air which are 
the respective abodes of the two powers of cognition 
and action, and constitute the limiting conditions of the 
internal Self may be spoken of as different. The internal 
Self, on the other hand, which is limited by those two 
adjuncts, is in itself non-differentiated, so that the two 
may be identified, as is done in the passage ‘ prawa is 
praijv^A.’ 

The second part of the Sutra is explained in a different 
manner also as follows : Characteristic marks of the 
individual soul as well as of the chief vital air are not 
out of place even in a chapter whose topic is Brahman. 
How so ? ‘ On account of the threefoldness of devout 

meditation.’ The chapter aims at enjoining three kinds 
of devout meditation on Brahman, according as Brahman 
is viewed under the aspect of prawa, under the aspect 

of pra^^fi, and in itself. The passages, ‘ Meditate (on me) 

as life, as immortality. Life is prawa,’ and ‘ Having laid 

hold of this body it makes it rise up. Therefore let man 

worship it alone as uktha,’ refer to the pra;/a aspect. 
The introductory passage, ‘Now we shall explain how all 
things become one in that pra^??a,’ and the subsequent 
passages, ‘Speech verily milked one portion thereof; the 
word is its object placed outside ; ’ and, ‘ Having by pra^;zi 
taken possession of speech he obtains by speech all words 
&c.,’ refer to the pra^wa aspect. The Brahman aspect 
finally is referred to in the following passage, ‘ These ten 


^ Viz. by the vrfttikSra. 



fOO 


VnitAJiTA-SUTUAS, 


objecl‘. luive refcuAice to pra^v/a, the ten subjects have 
reference t'l objects. Jf there were no objects there 
’iV'-mhl ijc juj .^ubjclts; and if there were no subjects 
there would be no objects, h'or on cither side alone no- 
thing could be achieved. But that is not many. For as 
in a car the circumference of the wheel is set on the spokes 
and the spokes on the nave, thus are these objects set on 
the subjects and the subjects on the pra//a.’ Thus we 
see that the one meditation on Brahman is here repre- 
sented as threefold, according as Brahman is viewed either 
with reference to two limiting conditions or in itself. In 
other passages also we find that devout meditation on 
Brahman is made dependent on Brahman being qualified 
by limiting adjuncts; so, ftr instance {/v/i. Up. Ill, 14, a), 
‘ He who consists of mind, whose body is pra«a.’ The 
hypothesis of Brahman being meditated upon under three 
aspects perfectly agrees with the pra;m chapter ^ ; as, on the 
one hand, from a comparison of the introductory and the 
concluding clauses we infer that the subject-matter of 
the whole chapter is one only, and as, on the other hand, 
we meet with characteristic marks of pra«a, pra^/7a, and 
Brahman in turns. It therefore remains a settled con- 
clusion that Brahman is the topic of the whole chapter. 


^ Ihapi tad yu^q'ate explaining the ‘ ilia tadyogat ’ of the Suti a. 



I ADIIYAYA, 2 PADA, I. IO7 


SECOND PADA. 

Reverence to the highest Self ! 

In the first pada Brahman has been shown to be the cause 
of the origin, subsistence, and reabsorption of the entire 
world, comprising the ether and the other elements. More- 
over, of this Brahman, which is the cause of the entire world, 
certain qualities have (implicitly) been declared, such as all- 
pervadingness, eternity, omniscience, its being the Self of 
all, and so on. Further, by producing reasons showing that 
some words which are generally used in a different sense 
denote Brahman also, we have been able to determine that 
some passages about whose sense doubts are entertained 
refer to Brahman, Now certain other passages present 
themselves which because containing only obscure indica- 
tions of Brahman give rise to the doubt whether they refer to 
the highest Self or to something else. , We therefore begin the 
second and third padas in order to settle those doubtful points. 

I. (That which consists of mind is Brahman) be- 
cause there is taught what is known from everywhere. 

Scripture says, ‘All this indeed is Brahman, beginning, 
ending, and breathing in it ; thus knowing let a man meditate 
with calm mind. Now man is made of determination 
(kratu) ; according to what his determination is in this world 
so will he be when he has departed this life. Let him there- 
fore form this determination ; he who consists of mind, whose 
body is breath (the subtle body),’ &c. {Kh. Up. Ill, 14). 
Concerning this passage the doubt presents itself whether 
what is pointed out as the object of meditation, by means 
of attributes such as consisting of mind, &c., is the embodied 
(individual) soul or the highest Brahman. 

The embodied Self, the purvapakshin says. — Why? — 
Because the embodied Self as the ruler of the organs of 
action is well known to be connected with the mind and so 
on, while the highest Brahman is not, as is declared in 
several scriptural passages, so, for instance (Mu. Up. II, i, 3), 



\ MjAN'TA-SrTILA'^. 


luH 

‘ He is without breath, without miiif!, ]jurc.‘ — I'ut, it may be 
objected, llie pa-^.sage, ‘ All this indeed i.s Ih-ahnian,’ mentions 
llrahman directly; how then can you suppose that the 
embodied Self forms the object of meditation? — This objec- 
tion does not apply, the piirvapakshin rejoins, because the 
pas.sage does not aim at enjoining meditation on Brahman, 
but rather at enjoining calmness of mind, the sense being : 
because Brahman is all this, ta^g^mlan, let a man meditate 
with a calm mind. That is to say: because all this 
aggregate of effects is Brahman only, springing from it, 
ending in it, and breathing in it ; and because, as everything 
constitute.s one Self only, there is no room for passion ; 
therefore a man is to meditate with a calm mind. And since 
the sentence aims at enjoining calmness of mind, it cannot 
at the same time enjoin meditation on Brahman ^ ; but 
meditation is separately enjoined in the clause, ' Let him 
form the determination, i.c. reflection.’ And thereupon 
the subsequent passage, ‘ He who consist.s of mind, whose 
body is breath,’ &c. states the object of the meditation in 
words indicatory of the individual soul. For this reason we 
maintain that the meditation spoken of has the individual 
soul for its object. The other attributes also subsequently 
stated in the text, ‘ He to whom all works, all desires belong,’ 
&c. may rightly be held to refer to the individual soul. 
The attributes, finally, of being what abides in the heart and 
of being extremely minute which are mentioned in the pas- 
sage, ‘ He is my Self within the heart, smaller than a corn of 
rice, smaller than a corn of barley,’ may be ascribed to the 
individual soul which has the size of the point of a goad, 
but not to the unlimited Brahman. If it be objected that the 
immediately following passage, ‘ greater than the earth,’ &c., 
cannot refer to something limited, we reply that smallness 
and greatness which are mutually opposite cannot indeed be 
ascribed to one and the same thing ; and that, if one attribute 

^ The clause ‘ he is to meditate with a calm mind ’ if taken as a 
guwavidhi, i. e. as enjoining some secondary matter, viz. calmness 
of mind of the meditating person, cannot at the same time enjoin 
meditation ; for that would involve a so-called split of the sentence 
(vdkyabheda). 



109 


I ADHYAYA, 2 PAPA, 2. 


only is to be ascribed to the subject of the passage, smallness 
is preferable because it is mentioned first ; while the great- 
ness mentioned later on may be attributed to the soul in so 
far as it is one with Brahman. If it is once settled that the 
whole passage refers to the individual soul, it follows that 
the declaration of Brahman also, contained in the passage, 
‘That is Brahman’ (III, 14, 4), refers to the individual 
souP, as it is clearly connected with the general topic. 
Therefore the individual soul is the object of meditation 
indicated by the qualities of consisting of mind and so on. 

To all this we reply: The highest Brahman only is what 
is to be meditated upon as distinguished by the attributes 
of consisting of mind and so on. — Why ? — ‘ On account of 
there being taught here what is known from everywhere.’ 
What is known from all Vedanta-passages to be the sense 
of the word Brahman, viz. the cause of the world, and what 
is mentioned here in the beginning words of the passage, 
(‘ all this indeed is Brahman,’) the same we must assume to 
be taught here as distinguished by certain qualities, viz. 
consisting of mind and so on. Thus we avoid the fault of 
dropping the subject-matter under discussion and needlessly 
introducing a nc\v topic. — But, it may be said, it has been 
shown that Brahman is, in the beginning of the passage, 
introduced merely for the purpose of intimating the injunc- 
tion of calmness of mind, not for the purpose of intimating 
Brahman itself. — True, we reply; but the fact nevertheless 
remains that, where the qualities of consisting of mind, &c. are 
spoken of, Brahman only is proximate (i.e. mentioned not 
far off so that it may be concluded to be the thing referred 
to), while the individual soul is neither proximate nor 
intimated by any word directly pointing to it. The cases 
of Brahman and the individual soul are therefore not equal. 

2. And because the qualities desired to be ex- 
pressed are possible (in Brahman ; therefore the 
passage refers to Brahman). 


^ G'lvespi dehadibrzrihanS^ ^yastvanyaydd brahmatety artha.^. 
An. Gi. 



i fO 


VI'IDANTA-sOtUAS. 


Although in tlic Veda wliich is not the work of man no 
v.’i.sli ill the strict sense can be expressed \ there being no 
speaktn-, still .‘-uch phrases as ‘desired to be expressed,’ may 
be liguratively used on account of the result, viz. (mental) 
comprehension. For just as in ordinary language we speak 
of something which is intimated by a word and is to be 
received (by the hearer as the meaning of the word), as 
‘dcbired to be expressed;’ so in the Veda also whatever is 
denoted as that which is to be received is ‘ desired to be 
expressed,' everything else ‘not desired to be expressed.’ 
What is to be received as the meaning of a Vedic sentence, 
and what not, is inferred from the general purport of 
the passage. Those qualities which arc here desired to 
be expressed, i.e. intimated as qualities to be dwelt on in 
meditation, viz. the qualities of having true purpo.ses, &c. 
arc possible in the highest Brahman ; for the quality of 
having true purposes may be ascribed to the highest Self 
which possesses unimpeded power over the creation, subsist- 
ence, and reabsorption of this world. Similarly the qualities 
of having true desires and tiuc purposes are attributed to 
the highest Self in another passage, viz. the one beginning, 
‘The Self which is free from sin’ {KJi. Up. VIII, 7, j), 
The clause, ‘ He whose Self is the ether,’ means ‘ he whose 
Self is like the ether ; ’ for Brahman may be said to be 
like the ether on account of its omnipresence and other 
qualities. This is also expressed by the clause, ‘ Greater 
than the earth.’ And the other explanation also, accord- 
ing to which the passage means ‘he whose Self is the 
ether ’ is possible, since Brahman which as the cause of the 
whole world is the Self of everything is also the Self of the 
ether. For the same reasons he is called ‘he to whom all 
works belong, and so on.’ Thus the qualities here intimated 
as topics of meditation agree with the nature of Brahman- 
We further maintain that the terms ‘ consisting of mind,’ and 
‘having breath for its body,’ which the purvapakshin asserts 


^ 'riit* discus>ion is brought on by the term 'vivakshita’ in the 
Sutra whose meaning is ‘ expressed, aimed at,’ but more literally 
‘ desired to be expressed.’ 



1 1 r 


I ADIIYAYA, 2 PA DA, 3 . 


cannot refer to Brahman, may refer to it. For as Brahman is 
the Self of everything, qualities such as consisting of mind 
and the like, which belong to the individual soul, belong to 
Brahman also. Accordingly S'ruti and Smrfti say of 
Brahman, ‘ Thou art woman, thou art man ; thou art youth, 
thou art maiden ; thou as an old man totterest along on thy 
staff ; thou art born with thy face turned everywhere ’ (S’ve. 
Up. IV, 3), and 'its hands and feet are everywhere, its eyes 
and head are everywhere, its ears are everywhere, it stands 
encompassing all in the world’ (Bha. Gita III, 13). 

The passage (quoted above against our view), ‘Without 
breatii, without mind, pure,’ refers to the pure (unrelated) 
Brahman. The terms ‘ consisting of mind ; having breath for 
its body, ’on the other hand, refer to Brahman as distinguished 
by qualities. Hence, as the qualities mentioned are possible 
in Brahman, we conclude that the highest Brahman only is 
represented as the object of meditation. 

3. On the other hand, as (those qualities) are not 
possible (in it), the embodied (soul is) not (denoted 
by manomaya, &c.). 

The preceding Sutra has declared that the qualities 
mentioned are possible in Brahman ; the present Sutra 
states that they are not possible in the embodied Self. 
Brahman only possesses, in the manner explained, the 
qualities of consisting of mind, and so on ; not the em- 
bodied individual soul. For qualities such as expressed in 
the words, ‘ He whose purposes are true, whose Self is the 
ether, who has no speech, who is not disturbed, who is 
greater than the earth,’ cannot easily be attributed to the 
embodied Self. By the term ‘embodied’ (jrarira) we have 
to understand ‘residing’ in a body. If it be objected that 
the Lord also resides in the body^, we reply. True, he 
does reside in the body, but not in the body only ; for .yruti 
declares him to be all-pervading ; compare, ‘ He is greater 
than the earth ; greater than the atmosphere, omnipresent 
like the ether, eternal.’ The individual soul, on the other 


^ Because he is vyapin. 



I 12 


VKf)ANTA"M‘Tli.\S. 


hand, is in the body only, apail bom which as the abode of 
fruition it <Ioe.s not exist. 

4. Anti because there is a (separate) denotation 
of the object of aclivity and of the agent. 

The attributes of consisting of mind, and so on, cannot 
belong to the embodied Self for that reason also, that there 
is a tseparatej denotation of the object of activity and of 
the agent. In the passage, ‘When I shall have departed 
from hence I shall obtain him ’ {Kh. Up. Ill, 14. 4), the 
word ‘him’ refers to that which is the topic'of discussion, 
viz. the Self which is to be meditated upon as possessing 
the attributes of consisting of mind, &c., as the object of an 
activit}', viz. as .something to be obtained ; while the words, 

‘ I shall obtain,’ represent the meditating individual Self as 
the agent, i.c. the obtainer. Now, wherever it can be 
helped, we must not assume that one and the same being is 
spoken of as the agent and the object of the activity at the 
same time. The relation existing between a person medi- 
tating and the thing meditated upon requires, moreover, 
different abode.s.— -And thus for the above reason, also, that 
which i.s characterised by the attributes of consisting of 
mind, and so on, cannot be the individual soul. 

5. On account of the difference of words. 

That which possesses the attributes of consisting of mind, 
and so on, cannot be the individual soul, for that reason also 
that there is a difference of words. 

That is to say, we meet with another scriptural passage of 
kindred subject-matter ( 5 at. Bra. X, 6 , 3, 3), ‘ Like a rice 
grain, or a barley grain, or a canary seed or the kernel of a 
canary seed, thus that golden person is in the Self.* There 
one word, i.c. the locative ‘ in the Self,’ denotes the embodied 
Self, and a different word, viz. the nominative ‘person,’ 
denotes the Self distinguished by the qualities of con- 
sisting of mind, &c. We therefrom conclude that the two 
are different. 

6. And on account of Smnti. 

Smr/ti also declares the difference of the embodied Self 



. I ADFIYAVA, 2 PADA, 7- ' I 13 


and the highest Selfj viz. Bha. Gita XVIII, 6i, ‘The Lord, 
O Ari,>‘una, is seated in the heart of all beings, driving round 
b}' his magical power all beings (as if they were) mounted 
on a machine.’ 

But what, it may be asked, is that so-called embodied 
vSelf different from the highest Self^which is to be set aside 
according to the preceding Sutras? Sruti passages, as well 
as Smr/ti, expressly deny that there is any Self apart from 
the highest Self; compare, for instance, B;V Up. Ill, 7 , 33, 
‘ There is no other seer but he ; there is no other hearer 
but he;’ and Bha. Gita XIII, 2, ‘And know me also, O 
Bharata, to be the kshetra^v/a in all kshetras.’ 

True, we reply, (there is in reality one universal Self only.) 
But the highest Self in so far as it is limited by its adjunctsj 
viz. the body, the senses, and the mind (mano-buddhi), is, 
by the ignorant, .spoken of as if it w’ere embodied. Simi- 
larly the ether, although in reality unlimited, appears limited 
owing to certain adjuncts, such as jars and other vessels. 
With regard to this (unreal limitation of the one Self) the 
distinction of objects of activity and of agents may be 
practically assumed, as long as we have not learned — 
from the passage, ‘ That art thou ’ — that the Self is one 
only. As soon, however, as we grasp the truth that there 
is only one universal Self, there is an end to the whole 
practical view of the world with its distinction of bondage, 
final release, and the like. 

7. If it be said that (the passage does) not (refer 
to Brahman) on account of the smallness of the 
abode (mentioned), and on account of the denotations 
of that (i. e. of minuteness) ; we say, no ; because 
(Brahman) has thus to be contemplated, and be- 
cause the case is analogous to that of ether. 

On account of the limitation of its abode, which is men- 
tioned in the clause, ‘ He is my Self within the heart,’ and 
on account of the declaration as to its minuteness contained 
in the direct statement, ‘ He is smaller than a grain of rice,’ 
&c. ; the embodied soul only, which is of the size of an awl’s 
point, is spoken of in the passage under discussion, and not 



II2 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


hand, is in the body only, apait from which as the abode of 
fruition it does not exist. 

4. And because there is a (separate) denotation 
of the object of activity and of the agent. 

The attributes of consisting of mind, and so on, cannot 
belong to the embodied Self for that reason also, that there 
is a (separate) denotation of the object of activity and of 
the agent. In the passage, ^ When I shall have, departed 
from hence I shall obtain him’ {Kh. Up. Ill, 14, 4), the 
word ‘ him ’ refers to that which is the topic'’‘of discussion, 
viz. the Self which is to he meditated upon as possessing 
the attributes of consisting of mind, &c., as the object of an 
activity, viz. as something to be obtained ; while the words, 

‘ I shall obtain,’ represent the meditating individual Self as 
the agent, i.e. the obtainer. Now, wherever it can be 
helped, we must not assume that one and the same being is 
spoken of as the agent and the object of the activity at the 
same time. The relation existing between a person medi- 
tating and the thing meditated upon requires, moreover, 
different abodes.— And thus for the above reason, also, that 
which is characterised by the attributes of consisting of 
mind, and so on, cannot be the individual soul. 

5. On account of the difference of words. 

That which possesses the attributes of consisting of mind, 
and so on, cannot be the individual soul, for that reason also 
that there is a difference of words. 

That is to say, we meet with another scriptural passage of 
kindred subject-matter (^at. Bra. X, 6, 3, a), ‘ Like a rice 
grain, or a barley grain, or a canary seed or the kernel of a 
canary seed, thus that golden person is in the Self.’ There 
one word, i.e. the locative ‘ in the Self,’ denotes the embodied 
Self, and a different word, viz. the nominative ‘person,’ 
denotes the Self distinguished by the qualities of con- 
sisting of mind, &c. We therefrom conclude that the two 
are different. 

6. And on account of Smrfti. 

Smn'ti also declares the difference of the embodied Self 



.1 ADIIYAYA, 2 PADA, 7. ■ II3 


and the highest Self, viz. Bha. Gita XVIII, 61, ‘The Lord, 
O Ar^^una, is seated in the heart of all beings, driving round 
by his magical power all beings (as if they were) mounted 
on a machine,’ 

But what, it may be asked, is that so-called embodied 
Self different from the highest Self^which is to be set aside 
according to the preceding Sutras ? S'ruti passages, as well 
as Smrffi, expressly deny that there is any Self apart from 
the highest Self; compare, for instance, Brf, Up. Ill, 7, 23, 
‘ There is no other seer but he ; there is no other hearer 
but he;’ and Bha. Gita XIII, 2, ‘And know me also, O 
Bhdrata, to be the kshetra^^ 7 a in all kshetras,’ 

True, we reply, (there is in reality one universal Self only.) 
But the highest Self in so far as it is limited by its adjuncts} 
viz. the body, the senses, and the mind (mano-buddhi), is, 
by the ignorant, spoken of as if it were embodied. Simi- 
larly the ether, although in reality unlimited, appears limited 
owing to certain adjuncts, such as jars and other vessels. 
With regard to this (unreal limitation of the one Self) the 
distinction of objects of activity and of agents may be 
practically assumed, as long as we have not learned — 
from the passage, ‘That art thou’— that the Self is one 
only. As soon, however, as we grasp the truth that there 
is only one universal Self, there is an end to the whole 
pi'actical view of the world with its distinction of bondage, 
final release, and the like. 

7. If it be said that (the passage does) not (refer 
to Brahman) on account of the smallness of the 
abode (mentioned), and on account of the denotations 
of that (i.e. of minuteness); we say, no; because 
(Brahman) has thus to be contemplated, and be- 
cause the case is analogous to that of ether. 

On account of the limitation of its abode, which is men- 
tioned in the clause, ‘ He is my Self within the heart/ and 
on account of the declaration as to its minuteness contained 
in the direct statement, ‘ He is smaller than a grain of rice,’ 
&c. ; the embodied soul only, which is of the size of an awl’s 
point, is spoken of in the passage under discussion, and not 
[34] I 



VEDANTA-SI^TRAS. 


II4 


the highest Self. This assertion made above (in the puiva- 
paksha of Sutra I, and restated in the purvapaksha of the 
present Sutra) has to be refuted. We thefefore maintain 
that the objection raised does not invalidate our view of the 
passage. It is true that a thing occupying a limited space 
only cannot in any way be spoken of as omnipresent ; but, 
on the other hand, that which is omnipresent, and therefore 
in all places may, from a certain point of view, be said to 
occupy a limited space. Similarly, a prince may be called 
the ruler of Ayodhya although he is at the same time the 
ruler of the whole earth. — But from what point of view can 
the omnipresent Lord be said to occupy a limited space and 
to be minute,? — He may, we reply, be spoken of thus, ‘because 
he is to be contemplated thus.’ The passage under discus- 
sion teaches us to contemplate the Lord as abiding within 
the lotus of the heart, characterised by minuteness and 
similar qualities — which apprehension of the Lord is ren- 
dered possible through a modification of the mind — ^just as 
Hari is contemplated in the sacred stone called .S^lagr^m. 
Although present everywhere, the Lord is pleased when 
meditated upon as dwelling in the heart. The case is, 
moreover, to be viewed as analogous to that of the ether. 
The ether, although all-pervading, is spoken of as limited 
and minute, if considered in its connexion with the eye of a 
needle ; so Brahman also. But it is an understood matter 
that the attributes of limitation of abode and of minuteness 
depend, in Brahman’s case, entirely on special forms of con- 
templation, and are not real. The latter consideration dis- 
poses also of the objection, that if Brahman has its abode 
in the heart, which heart-abode is a different one in each 
body, it would follow that it is affected by all the imper- 
fections which attach to beings having different abodes, such 
as parrots shut up in different cages, viz. want of unity, 
being made up of parts, non-permanency, and so on. 

8. If it is said that (from the circumstance of 
Brahman and the individual soul being one) there 
follows fruition (on the part of Brahman); we say, 
no ; on account of the difference of nature (of the two). 



I ADHYAYA, 2 PADA, 8 . 1 1 5 


But, it may be said, as Brahman is omnipresent like ether, 
and therefore connected with the hearts of all living beings, 
and as it is of the nature of intelligence and therefore not dif- 
ferent from the individual soul, it follows that Brahman also 
has the same fruition of pleasure, pain, and so on (as the indi- 
vidual soul). The same result follows from its unity. For 
in reality there exists no transmigratory Self different from 
the highest Self; as appears from the text, ‘There is no 
other knower but he’ (Brf. Up. Ill, 7, 23), and similar pas- 
sages. Hence the highest Self is subject to the fruition 
connected with transmigratory existence. 

This is not so, we reply ; because there is a difference of 
nature. From the circumstance that Brahman is connected 
with the hearts of all living beings it does not follow that it 

is, like the embodied Self, subject to fruition. For, between 
the embodied Self and the highest Self, there is the dif- 
ference that the former acts and enjoys, acquires merit and 
demerit, and is affected by pleasure, pain, and so on ; while 
the latter is of the opposite nature, i. e. characterised by being 
free from all evil and the like. On account of this difference 
of the two, the fruition of the one does not extend to the 
other. To assume merely on the ground of the mutual 
proximity of the two, without considering their essentially 
different powers, that a connexion with effects exists (in 
Brahman’s casesalso), would be no better than to suppose 
that space is on fire (when something in space is on fire). 
The same objection and refutation apply to the case of 
those also who teach the existence of more than one omni- 
present Self. In reply to the assertion, that because 
Brahman is one and there are no other Selfs outside 

it. Brahman must be subject to fruition since the individual 

soul is so, we ask the question : How have you, our wise 
opponent, ascertained that there is no other Self? You will 
reply, we suppose, from scriptural texts such as, ‘ That art 
thou,’ ‘ I am Brahman,’ ‘ There is no other knower but he,’ 
and so on. Very well, then, it appears that the truth about 
scriptural matters is to be ascertained from Scripture, and 
that Scripture is not sometimes to be appealed to, and on 
other' occasions to be disregarded. ' 



Il6 VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


Scriptural texts, such as 'that art thou,’ teach that 
Brahman which is free from all evil is the Self of the 
embodied soul, and thus dispel even the opinion that the em- 
bodied soul is subject to fruition ; how then should fruition 
on the part of the embodied soul involve fruition on the 
part of Brahman ? — Let, then, the unity of the individual 
soul and Brahman not be apprehended on the ground of 
Scripture. — In that case, we reply, the fruition on the part 
of the individual soul has wrong knowledge for its cause, 
and Brahman as it truly exists is not touched thereby, not 
any more than the ether becomes really dark-blue in con- 
sequence of ignorant people presuming it to be so. For 
this reason the SutrakAra says^ 'no, on account of the 
difference.’ In spite of their unity, fruition on the part of 
the soul does not involve fruition on the part of Brahman; 
because there is a difference. For there is a difference 
between false knowledge and perfect knowledge, fruition 
being the figment of false knowledge while the unity (of 
the Self) is revealed by perfect knowledge. Now, as the 
substance revealed by perfect knowledge cannot be affected 
by fruition which is nothing but the figment of false 
knowledge, it is impossible to assume even a shadow of 
fruition on Brahman’s part. 

9. The eater (is the highest Self) since what is 
movable and what is immovable is mentioned (as 
his food). 

We read in the Ka^/^avalli (I, 2, 25), ‘ Who then knows 
where Fie is, He to whom the Brahmans and Kshattriyas 
are but food, and death itself a condiment ? ’ This passage 
intimates, by means of the words ‘ food ’ and ‘ condiment,’ 
that there is some eater. A doubt then arises whether the 
eater be Agni or the individual soul or the highest Self ; 
for no distinguishing characteristic is stated, and Agni as 
well as the individual soul and the highest Self is observed 
to form, in that Upanished, the subjects of questions^, 

^ Another interpretation of the later part of Shtra. 

2 Cp. Ka//^a Up. I, i, 13 ; 20; I, 2, 14. 




I ADHYAYA, 2 pAdA, IO. 


II7 


The purvapakshin maintains that the eater is Agni, fire 
being known from Scripture as well (cp. Up, I, 4, 6) 
as from ordinary life to be the eater of food. Or else 
the individual soul may be the eater, according to the 
passage, ‘One of them eats the sweet fruit’ (Mu. Up. Ill, 
I, i). On the other hand, the eater cannot be Brahman 
on account of the passage (which forms the continuation 
of the one quoted from the Mu. Up.), ‘ The other looks 
on without eating.’ 

The eater, we reply, must be the highest Self •' because 
there is mentioned what is movable and what is immov- 
able.’ For all things movable and immovable are here 
to be taken as constituting the food, while death is the 
condiment. But nothing beside the highest Self can be 
the consumer of all these things in their totality; the 
highest Self, however, when reabsorbing the entire aggre- 
gate of effects may be said to eat everything. If it is 
objected that here no express mention is made of things 
movable and things immovable, and that hence we have 
no right to use the (alleged) mention made of them as a 
reason, we reply that this objection is unfounded ; firstly, 
because the aggregate of all living beings is seen to be 
meant from the circumstance of death being the condiment ; 
and, secondly, because the Brahmans and Kshattriyas may 
here, on account of their pre-eminent position, be viewed 
as instances only (of all beings). Concerning the objection 
that the highest Self cannot be an eater on account of the 
passage quoted (‘the other looks on without eating’), we 
remark that that passage aims at denying the fruition (on 
the part of the highest Self) of the results of works, such 
fruition being mentioned in immediate proximity, but 
is not meant to negative the reabsorption of the world 
of effects (into Brahman) ; for it is well established by all 
the Vedanta-texts that Brahman is the cause of the 
creation, subsistence, and reabsorption of the world. There- 
fore the eater can here be Brahman only. 

IO, And on account of the topic under discussion. 
That the highest Self only can be the eater referred to 



1 1 8 VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


is moreover evident from the passage (Ka. Up. I, 2 , i8), 

The knowing Self is not born, it dies not ’), which shows 
that the highest Self is the general topic. And to adhere 
to the general topic is the proper proceeding. Further, the 
clause, ‘ Who then knows where he is,’ shows that the 
cognition is connected with difficulties ; which circumstance 
again points to the highest Self. 

II. The ‘two entered into the cave’ (are the in- 
dividual soul and the highest Self), for the two are 
(intelligent) Selfs (and therefore of the same nature), 
as it is seen (that numerals denote beings of the 
same nature). 

In the same Ka2f//:avalli we read (I, 3, i), ‘There are the 
two drinking the reward of their works in the world, (i. e. 
the body,) entered into the cave, dwelling on the highest 
summit. Those who know Brahman call them shade and 
light; likewise those householders who perform the Tri^za- 
^iketa sacrifice.’ 

Here the doubt arises whether the mind (buddhi) and 
the individual soul are referred to, or the individual soul 
and the highest Self. If the mind and the individual soul, 
then the individual soul is here spoken of as different from 
the aggregate of the organs of action, (i.e. the body,) among 
which the mind occupies the first place. And a statement 
on this point is to be expected, as a question concerning 
it is asked in a preceding passage, viz. I, i, 20, ‘ There is 
that doubt when a man is dead — some saying he is ; 
others, he is not. This I should like to know taught by 
thee; this is the third of my boons.’ If, on the other- 
hand, the passage refers to the individual soul and the 
highest Self, then it intimates that the highest Self is 
different from the individual soul; and this also requires 
to be declared here, on account of the question contained 
in the passage (I, a, 14), ‘ That which thou seest as different 
from religious duty and its contrary, from effect and cause, 
from the past and the future, tell me that.’ 

The doubt to which the passage gives rise having thus 



I ADHYAYA, 2 pAdA, II. HQ 


been stated, a caviller starts the following objection : neither 
of the stated views can be maintained. — Why? — On account 
of the characteristic mark implied in the circumstance that 
the two are said to drink, i.e. to enjoy, the fruit of their 
works in the world. For this can apply to the intelligent 
individual soul only, not to the non-intelligent buddhi. 
And as the dual form ‘ drinking ’ (pibantau) shows that 
both are drinking, the view of the two being the 
buddhi and the individual soul is not tenable. For the 
same reason the other opinion also, viz. of the two being 
the individual soul and the highest Self, cannot be main- 
tained ; for drinking (i.e, the fruition of reward) cannot 
be predicated of the highest Self, on account of the mantra 
(Mu. Up. Ill, I, i), ‘The other looks on without eating.’ 

These objections, we reply, are without any force. Just 
as we see that in phrases such as ‘ the men with the 
umbrella (lit. the umbrella-men) are walking,’ the attri- 
bute of being furnished with an umbrella which properly 
speaking belongs to one man only is secondarily ascribed 
to many, so here two agents are spoken of as drinking 
because one of them is really drinking. Or else we may 
explain the passage by saying that, while the individual 
soul only drinks, the Lord also is said to drink because 
he makes the soul drink. On the other hand, we may 
also assume that the two are the buddhi and the individual 
soul, the instrument being figuratively spoken of as the 
agent — a figure of speech exemplified by phrases such as 
‘ the fuel cooks (the food).’ And in a chapter whose topic 
is the soul no two other beings can well be represented 
as enjoying rewards. Hence there is room for the doubt 
whether the two are the buddhi and the individual soul, 
or the individual soul and the highest Self. 

Here the pfirvapakshin maintains that the former of 
the two stated views is the right one, because the two 
beings are qualified as ‘ entered into the cave.’ Whether 
we understand by the cave the body or the heart, in either 
case the buddhi and the individual soul may be spoken 
of as ‘ entered into the cave.’ Nor would it be appropriate, 
as long as another interpretation is possible, to assume 



120 


vedAnta-s^tras. 


that a special place is here ascribed to the omnipresent 
Brahman. Moreover, the words ‘in the world of their 
good deeds ’ show that the two do not pass beyond the 
sphere of the results of their good works. But the highest 
Self is not in the sphere of the results of either good or 
bad works : according to the scriptural passage^ ‘ It does 
not grow larger by works nor does it grow smaller.’ Further, 
the words ‘ shade and light ’ properly designate what is 
intelligent and what is non-intelligent, because the two are 
opposed to each other like light and shade. Hence we con- 
clude that the buddhi and the individual soul are spoken of. 

To this we make the following reply : — In the passage 
under discussion the individual soul (vi^Mndtman) and the 
highest Self are spoken of, because these two, being both 
intelligent Selfs, are of the same nature. For we see that 
in ordinary life also, whenever a number is mentioned, beings 
of the same class are understood to be meant ; when, for 
instance, the order is given, ‘Look out for a second (i.e. a 
fellow) for this bull,’ people look out for a second bull, not 
for a horse or a man. So here also, where the mention of 
the fruition of rewards enables us to determine that the 
individual soul is meant, we understand at once, when a 
second is required, that the highest Self has to be understood ; 
for the highest Self is intelligent, and therefore of the same 
nature as the soul. — But has it not been said above that the 
highest Self cannot be meant here, on account of the text 
stating that it is placed in the cave ? — Well, we reply, jruti as 
well as sm^'fti speaks of the highest Self as placed in the 
cave. Compare, for instance (Ka. Up. 1 , 2, 12), ‘ The Ancient 
who is hidden in the cave, who dwells in the abyss ; ’ Taitt. 
Up. II, I, ‘ He who knows him hidden in the cave, in the 
highest ether ; ’ and, ‘ Search for the Self entered into the 
cave.’ That it is not contrary to reason to assign to the omni- 
present Brahman a special locality, for the purpose of clearer 
perception, we have already demonstrated. The attribute of 
existing in the world of its good works, which properly belongs 
to one of the two only, viz. to the individual soul, may be 
assigned to both, analogously to the case of the men, one of 
whom carries an umbrella. Their being compared to light 



I ADHYAyA, 2 PADA, 12. 


I 21 


and shade also is unobjectionable, because the qualities of 
belonging and not belonging to this transmigratory world 
are opposed to each other, like light and shade ; the quality 
of belonging to it being due to Nescience, and the quality of 
not belonging to it being real. We therefore understand by 
the two 'entered into the cave/ the individual soul and the 
highest Self, — Another reason for this interpretation follows. 

12. And on account of the distinctive qualities 
(mentioned). 

Moreover, the distinctive qualities mentioned in the text 
agree only with the individual Self and the highest Self. 
For in a subsequent passage (I, 3, 3), ' Know the Self to be 
the charioteer, the body to be the chariot,’ which contains the 
simile of the chariot, the individual soul is represented as a 
charioteer driving on through transmigratory existence and 
final release, while the passage (9), ‘ He reaches the end of 
his journey, and that is the highest place of Vish;m,’ repre- 
sents the highest Self as the goal of the driver’s course. 
And in a preceding passage also, (I, 2, 12, ‘The wise, who by 
means of meditation on his Self, recognises the Ancient who 
is difficult to be seen, who has entered into the dark, who is 
hidden in the cave, who dwells in the abyss, as God, he 
indeed leaves joy and sorrow far behind,’) the same two 
beings are distinguished as thinker and as object of thought. 
The highest Self is, moreover, the general topic. And fur- 
ther, the clause, ‘ Those who know Brahman call them,’ .&c., 
which brings forward a special class of speakers, is in its 
place only if the highest Self is accepted (as one of the two 
beings spoken of). It is therefore evident that the passage 
undei discussion refeis to the individual soul and the highest 
Self. 

The same reasoning applies to the passage (Mu. Up. Ill, 

I, i), ‘Two birds, inseparable friends,’ &c. There also the 
Self is the geiieial topic, and hence 110 two ordinary birds 
can be meant ; we thei'efore conclude from the characteristic 
mark of eating, mentioned in the passage, ‘ One of them eats 
the sweet fruit, that the individual soul is meant, and from 



122 


vedanta-sOtras. 


the characteristic marks of abstinence from eating and of in- 
telligence, implied in the words, ‘The other looks on without 
eating,’ that the highest Self is meant. In a subsequent 
mantra again the two are distinguished as the seer and the 
object of sight. ‘ Merged into the same tree (as it were into 
water) man grieves at his own impotence (ani.ra), bewildered ; 
but when he sees the other Lord (La) contented and knows 
his gloiy, then his grief passes away.’ 

Another (commentator) gives a different interpretation of 
the mantra, ‘ Two birds inseparable,’ &c. To that mantra, 
he says, the final decision of the present head of discussion 
does not apply, because it is differently interpreted in the 
Paiiigi-rahasya Brahma/«a. According to the latter the being 
which eats the sweet fruit is the sattva ; the other being which 
looks on without eating, the individual soul {gn'^ ; so that 
the two are the sattva and the individual soul (kshetra^;za). 
The objection that the word sattva might denote the indi- 
vidual soul, and the word kshetra^zza, the highest Self, is to 
be met by the remark that, in the first place, the words 
sattva and kshetra^/za have the settled meaning of internal 
organ and individual soul, and are, in the second place, 
expressly so interpreted there, (viz. in the Paiiigi-rahasya,) 

‘ The sattva is that by means of which man sees dreams ; 
the embodied one, the seer, is the kshetra^wa ; the two are 
therefore the internal organ and the individual souk’ Nor 
does the mantra under discussion fall under the pfirvapaksha 
propounded above. For it does not aim at setting forth 
the embodied individual soul, in so far as it is characterised 
by the attributes connected with the transmigratory state, 
such as acting and enjoying ; but in so far rather as it 
transcends all attributes connected with the samsAra and is 
of the nature of Brahman, i. e. is pure intelligence ; as is 
evident from the clause, ‘The other looks on without eating.’ 
That agrees, moreover, with .rruti and smnti passages, such 
as, ‘That art thou,’ and ‘Know me also to be the individual 
soul’ (Bha. Giti XIII, 2). Only on such an explanation 
of the passage as the preceding one there is room for the 
declaration made in the concluding passage of the section, 

‘ These two are the sattva and the kshetra^^a ; to him indeed 



I adhyAya, 2 pIda, 13. 123 

who knows this no impurity attaches — But how can, on 
the above interpretation, the non-intelligent sattva (i. e. the 
internal organ) be spoken of as an enjoyer, as is actually done 
in the clause, ‘One of them eats the sweet fruit?’ — The whole 
passage, we reply, does not aim at setting forth the fact 
that the sattva is an enjoyer, but rather the fact that the 
intelligent individual soul is not an enjoyer, but is of the nature 
of Brahman. To that end^ the passage under discussion 
metaphorically ascribes the attribute of being an enjoyer to 
the internal organ, in so far as it is modified by pleasure, 
pain, and the like. For all acting and enjoying is at the 
bottom based on the non-discrimination (by the soul) of 
the respective nature of internal organ and soul ; while in 
reality neither the internal organ nor the soul either act or 
enjoy; not the former, because it is non-intelligent; not the 
latter, because it is not capable of any modification. And 
the internal organ can be considered as acting and enjoying, 
all the less as it is a mere presentment of N escience. In agree- 
ment with what we have here maintained. Scripture (‘ For 
where there is as it were duality there one sees the other,’ 
&c. ; B/'f. Up. IV, 5, 15) declares that the practical assump- 
tion of agents, and so on — comparable to the assumption of 
the existence of elephants, and the like, seen in a dream — 
holds good in the sphere of Nescience only ; while the pas- 
sage, ‘ But when the Self only is all this, how should he see 
another ? ’ declares that all that pi-actically postulated exist- 
ence vanishes for him who has arrived at discriminative 
knowledge. 

1 3. The person within (the eye) (is Brahman) on 
account of the agreement (of the attributes of that 
person with the nature of Brahman). 

^ Freedom from impurity can result only from the knowledge 
that the individual soul is in reality Brahman. The commentators 
explain ra^as by avidya. 

^ Tadartham iti, ^ivasya brahmasiddhyartham iti ydvat, /^aitany- 
aMay^panna dhty^ sukhadina pari;^amata iti, tatra purusho^cpi bhak- 
trftvam ivSnubhavati na tattvata iti vaktum adhySropayati. Ananda 
Giri. 



VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


124 


Scripture says, ‘ He spoke : The person that is seen in the 
eye that is the Self. This is the immortal, the fearless, this 
is Brahman. Even though they drop melted butter or water 
on it (the eye) it runs away on both sides,’ &c. {Kh. Up. 
IV, 15, I). 

The doubt here arises whether this passage refers to the^ 
reflected Self which resides in the eye, or to the individual 
Self, or to the Self of some deity which presides over the 
sense of sight, or to the Lord. 

With reference to this doubt the purvapakshin argues as 
follows : What is meant (by the person in the eye) is the 
reflected Self, i. e. the image of a person (reflected in the eye 
of another) : for of that it is well known that it is seen, and 
the clause, ‘ The person that is seen in the eye,’ refers to it 
as something well known. Or else we may appropriately 
take the passage as referring to the individual Self. For 
the individual Self (cognitional Self, vi^^^n^tman) which 
perceives the colours by means of the eye is, on that account, 
in proximity to the eye ; and, moreover, the word ‘ Self’ 
(which occurs in the passage) favours this interpretation. 
Or else the passage is to be understood as referring to the soul 
animating the sun which assists the sense of sight ; compare 
the passage (Bn. Up. V, 5, ^), ‘ He (the person in the sun) 
rests with his rays in him (the person in the right eye).’ More- 
over, qualities such as immortality and the like (which are 
ascribed to the subject of the scriptural passage) may some- 
how belong to individual deities. The Lord, on the other 
hand cannot be meant, because a particular locality is 
spoken of. 

Against this we remark that the highest Lord only 
can be meant here by the person within the eye. — Why ? — 

‘ On account of the agreement.’ For the qualities men- 
tioned in the passage accord with the nature of the highest 
Lord. The quality of being the Self, in the first place, 
belongs to the highest Lord in its primary (non-figurative 
or non- derived) sense, as we know from such texts as ‘ That 

^ Who, somebody might say, is to be understood here, because 
immoitality and similar qualities belong to him not somehow only, 
but in their true sense. 



I ADHYAYA, 2 PA DA, 1 4 . 


125 


is the Self,’ ‘ That art thou.’ Immortality and fearlessness 
again are often ascribed to him in Scripture. The location 
in the eye also is in consonance with the nature of the 
highest Lord. For just as the highest Lord whom Scrip- 
ture declares to be free from all evil is not stained by any 
imperfections, so the station of the eye also is declared 
to be free from all stain, as we see from the passage, ‘ Even 
though they drop melted butter or water on it it runs away 
on both sides.’ The statement, moreover, that he possesses 
the qualities of sawyadvama, &c. can be reconciled with 
the highest Lord only {Kh. Up. IV, 15, a, ‘They call him 
Sa7/2yadvama, for all blessings (vama) go towards him 
(sa7;^yanti). He is also vamani, for he leads (nayati) all 
blessings (vama). He is also Bhamani, for he shines (bhdti) 
in all worlds’). Therefore, on account of agreement, the 
person within the eye is the highest Lord. 

14. And on account of the statement of place, and 
so on. 

But how does the confined locality of the eye agree 
with Brahman which is omnipresent like the ether?- — To 
this question we reply that there would indeed be a want 
of agreement if that one locality only were assigned to 
the Lord. For other localities also, viz. the earth and so 
on, are attributed to him in the passage, ‘ He who dwells 
in the earth,’ &c. (Brz. Up. Ill, 7, 3). And among those 
the eye also is mentioned, viz. in the clause, ‘ He who dwells 
in the eye,’ &c. The phrase ‘ and so on,’ which forms part 
of the Sfitra, intimates that not only locality is assigned 
to Brahman, although not (really) appropriate to it, but that 
also such things as name and form, although not appro- 
priate to Brahman which is devoid of name and form, are 
yet seen to be attributed to it. That, in such passages as 
‘ His name is ut, he with the golden beard ’ {Kh. Up. I, 
6, 7, 6), Brahman although devoid of qualities is spoken 
of, for the purposes of devotion, as possessing qualities 
depending on name and form, we have already shown. And 
we have, moreover, shown that to attribute to Brahman 



VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


I 26 


a definite locality, in spite of his omnipresence, subserves 
the purposes of contemplation, and is therefore not con- 
trary to reason ^ ; no more than to contemplate 'Vish;?m in 
the sacred ralagrdm. 

15. And on account of the passage referring to 
that which is distinguished by pleasure (i. e. Brah- 
man). 

There is, moreover, really no room for dispute whether 
Brahman be meant in the passage under discussion or not, 
because the fact of Brahman being meant is established 
‘ by the reference to that which is distinguished by pleasure.’ 
For the same Brahman which is spoken of as characterised 
by pleasure in the beginning of the chapter viz. in the 
clauses, ‘ Breath is Brahman, Ka is Brahman, Kha is Brah- 
man,’ that same Brahman we must suppose to be referred 
to in the present passage also, it being proper to adhere 
to the subject-matter under discussion ; the clause, ‘ The 
teacher will tell you the way^,’ merely announcing that 
the way will be proclaimed [by the teacher; not that a 
new subject will be started]. — How then, it may be asked, 
is it known that Brahman, as distinguished by pleasure, is 
spoken of in the beginning of the passage? — We reply: 
On hearing the speech of the fires, viz. ‘ Breath is Brahman, 
Ka is Brahman, Kha is Brahman,’ Upakojala says, ‘I under- 
stand that breath is Brahman, but I do not understand 
that Ka or Kha is Brahman.’ Thereupon the fires reply, 
‘ What is Ka is Kha, what is Kha is Ka.’ Now the word 
Kha denotes in ordinary language the elemental ether. 
If therefore the word Ka which means pleasure were not 
applied to qualify the sense of ‘ Kha,’ we should conclude 


^ The /ilds say that the contents of this last sentence are hinted 
at by the word ^ and ’ in the Sutra. 

® I. e. at the beginning of the instruction which the sacred fires 
give to Upakojala, Kh. Up. IV, 10 fF. 

® Which words conclude the instruction given by the fires, and 
introduce the instruction given by the teacher, of which the passage 
‘ the person that is seen in the eye,’ &c. forms a part. 



I adhyAya, 2 pAda, 15. 


127 


that the name Brahman is here symbolically ^ given to the 
mere elemental ether as it is (in other places) given to 
mere names and the like. Thus also with regard to the 
word Ka, which, in ordinary language, denotes the imperfect 
pleasure springing from the contact of the sense-organs 
with their objects. If the word Kha were not applied to 
qualify the sense of Ka we should conclude that ordinary 
pleasure is here called Brahman. But as the two words 
Ka and Kha (occur together and therefore) qualify each 
other, they intimate Brahman whose Self is pleasure. 
If^ in the passage referred to (viz. ‘Breath is Brahman, 
Ka is Brahman, Kha is Brahman’) the second Brahman 
(i. e. the word Brahman in the clause ‘ Ka is Brahman ’) 
were not added, and if the sentence would run ‘ Ka, Kha 
is Brahman,’ the word Ka would be employed as a mere 
qualifying word, and thus pleasure as being a mere quality 
would not be represented as a subject of meditation. To 
prevent this, both words — Ka as well as Kha — are joined 
with the word Brahman (‘ Ka (is) Brahman, Kha (is) Brah- 
man’). For the passage wishes to intimate that pleasure 
also, although a quality, should be meditated upon as some- 
thing in which qualities inhere. It thus appears that at 
the beginning of the chapter Brahman, as characterised 
by pleasure, is spoken of. After that the Gdrhapatya and 
the other sacred fires proclaim in turns their own glory, 
and finally conclude with the words, ‘ This is our knowledge, 
O fiiend, and the knowledge of the Self ’ wherein they point 
back to the Brahman spoken of before. The words, ‘ The 
teacher will tell you the way ’ (which form the last clause 
of the concluding passage), merely promise an explanation 
of the way, and thus preclude the idea of another topic being 
started. The teacher thereupon saying, ‘ As water does 
not cling to a lotus leaf, so no evil deed clings to one who 
knows it ’ (which words intervene between the concludiiip- 

O 

1 ^ 

An-a}4ntarapratyayasyfin-ayantare kshepa// pratika//, yathS 
brahmajabda/^ paramatmavishayo ntinS,dishu kshipyate. Bhd. 

- The following sentences give the reason why, although there is 
only one Brahman, the word Brahman is repeated. 



128 


vedanta-sOtras. 


speech of the fires and the information given by the teacher 
about the person within the eye) declares that no evil 
attacks him who knows the person within the eye, and 
thereby shows the latter to be Brahman. It thus appears 
that the teacher’s intention is to speak about that Brahman 
which had formed the topic of the instruction of the fires ; 
to represent it at first as located in the eye and possessing 
the qualities of Sa^;^yadvama and the like, and to point out 
afterwards that he who thus knows passes on to light and 
so on. He therefore begins by saying, ‘ That person that 
is seen in the eye that is the Self.’ 

1 6. And on account of the statement of the way 
of him who has heard the Upanishads. 

The person placed in the eye is the highest lord for 
the following reason also. From xruti as well as smrzti 
we are acquainted with the way of him who has heard 
the Upanishads or the secret knowledge, i. e. who knows 
Brahman. That way, called the path of the - gods, is 
described (Pra. Up. I, lo), ‘Those who have sought the 
Self by penance, abstinence, faith, and knowledge gain 
by the northern path the sun. This is the home of the 
spirits, the immortal, free from fear, the highest. From 
thence they do not return;’ and also (Bha, Gita VIII, 24), 
‘Fire, light, the bright fortnight, the six months of the 
northern progress of the sun, on that way those who know 
Brahman go, when they have died, to Brahman.’ Now that 
very same way is seen to be stated, in our text, for him 
who knows the person within the eye. For we read [Kh. 
Up. IV, 15, 5), ‘Now whether people perform obsequies 
for him or no he goes to light ; ’ and later on, ‘ From the 
sun (he goes) to the moon, from the moon to lightning. 
There is a person not human, he leads them to Brahman. 
This is the path of the gods, the path that leads to Brah- 
man. Those who proceed on that path do not return to 
the life of man,’ From this description of the way which 
is known to be the way of him who knows Brahman we 
ascertain that the person within the eye is Brahman. 



I ADIIYAVA, 2 PADA, 1 7. 


I 29 


17. (The person within the eye is the highest), 
not any other Self; on account of the non-perma- 
nency (of the other Selfs) and on account of the im- 
possibility (of the qualities of the person in the eye 
being ascribed to the other Selfs). 

To the assertion made in the purvapaksha that the 
person in the eye is either the reflected Self or the cog- 
nitional Self (the individual soul) or the Self of some deity 
the following answer is given. — No other Self such as, for 
instance, the reflected Self can be assumed here, on account 
of non-permanency. — The reflected Self, in the first place, 
does not permanently abide in the eye. For when some 
person approaches the eye the reflection of that person 
is seen in the eye, but when the person moves away 
the reflection is seen no longer. The passage ‘ That 
person within the eye’ must, moreover, be held, on the 
ground of proximity, to intimate that the person seen in 
a man’s own eye is the object of (that man’s) devout medi- 
tation (and not the reflected image of his own person which 
he may see in the eye of another man). [Let, then, another 
man approach the devout man, and let the latter meditate 
on the image reflected in his own eye, but seen by the other 
man only. No, we reply, for] we have no right to make 
the (complicated) assumption that the devout man is, at 
the time of devotion, to bring close to his eye another 
man in order to produce a reflected image in his own 
eye. Scripture, moreover, (viz. Kh. Up. VIII, 9, i, ‘ It (the 
reflected Self) perishes as soon as the body perishes,’) 
declares the non-permanency of the reflected Self. — And, 
further, ‘ on account of impossibility ’ (the person in the 
eye cannot be the reflected Self). For immortality and 
the other qualities ascribed to the person in the eye are 
not to be perceived in the reflected Self. — Of the cogni- 
tional Self, in the second place, which is in general con- 
nexion with the whole body and all the senses, it can 
likewise not be said that it has its permanent station in 
the eye only. That, on the other hand, Brahman although 
all-pervading may, for the purpose of contemplation, be 
[34] K 



130 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS, 


spoken of as connected with particular places such as the 
heart and the like, we have seen already. The cognitional 
Self shares (with the reflected Self) the impossibility of 
having the qualities of immortality and so on attributed to 
it. Although the cognitional Self is in reality not different 
from the highest Self, still there are fictitiously ascribed 
to it (adhyaropita) the effects of nescience, desire and 
works, viz. mortality and fear ; so that neither immortality 
nor fearlessness belongs to it. The qualities of being the 
sawyadvdma, &c. also cannot properly be ascribed to the 
cognitional Self, which is not distinguished by lordly power 
(ai.rvarya). — In the third place, although the Self of a deity 
(viz. the sun) has its station in the eye — according to the 
scriptural passage, ‘ He rests with his rays in him —still 
Selfhood cannot be ascribed to the sun, on account of 
his externality (pardgrupatva). Immortality, &c. also cannot 
be predicated of him, as Scripture speaks of his origin and 
his dissolution. For the (so-called) deathlessness of the 
gods only means their (comparatively) long existence. And 
their lordly power also is based on the highest Lord and 
does not naturally belong to them ; as the mantra declares, 
‘ From terror of it (Brahman) the wind blows, from terror 
the sun rises ; from terror of it Agni and Indra, yea, Death 
runs as the fifth.’ — Hence the person in the eye 'must be 
viewed as the highest Lord only. In the case of this 
explanation being adopted the mention (of the person in 
the eye) as something well known and established, which 
is contained in the words ' is seen ’ (in the phrase ‘ the 
person that is seen in the eye’), has to be taken as referring- 
to (the mental perception founded on) the jdstra which 
belongs to those who know ; and the glorification (of devout 
meditation) has to be understood as its purpose. 

1 8, The internal ruler over the devas and so on 
(is Brahman), because the attributes of that (Brah- 
man) are designated. 

In Bn. Up. HI, 7, i fif. we read, ‘He who within rules 
this world and the other world and all beings,’ and later 
on, ‘ He who dwells in the earth and within the earth, whom 



I adhyAya, 2 pAda, 1 8. 13 I 


the earth does not know, whose body the earth is, who 
rules the earth within, he is thy Self, the ruler within, the 
immortal,’ &c. The entire chapter (to sum up its contents) 
speaks of a being, called the antaryamin (the internal ruler), 
who, dwelling within, rules with reference to the gods, 
the world, the Veda, the sacrifice, the beings, the Self. — 
Here now, owing to the unusualness of the term (antar- 
yamin), there arises a doubt whether- it denotes the Self 
of some deity which presides over the gods and so on, 
or some Yogin who has acquired extraordinary powers, 
such as^ for instance, the capability of making his body 
subtle, or the highest Self, or some other being. What 
alternative then does recommend itself? 

As the term is an unknown one, the purvapakshin says, 
we must assume that the being denoted by it is also an 
unknown one, different from all those mentioned above. — 
Or else it may be said that, on the one hand, we have no 
right to assume something of an altogether indefinite 
character, and that, on the other hand, the term antaryd- 
min — which is derived from antaryamana (ruling within) — 
cannot be called altogether unknown, that therefore antar- 
ydmin may be assumed to denote some god presiding over 
the earth, and so on. Similarly, we read (Bn. Up. Ill, 9, 
16), ‘He whose dwelling is the earth, whose sight is fire, 
whose mind is light,’ &c. A god of that kind is capable of 
ruling the earth, and so on, dwelling within them, because 
he is endowed with the organs of action ; rulership is there- 
fore rightly ascribed to him. — Or else the rulership spoken 
of may belong to some Yogin whom his extraordinary powers 
enable to enter within all things. — The highest Self, on the 
other hand, cannot be meant, as it does not possess the organs 
of action (which are required for ruling). 

To this we make the following reply. — The internal ruler, 
of whom Scripture speaks with reference to the gods, must 
be the highest Self, cannot be anything else. — Why so ? — 
Because its qualities are designated in the passage under 
discussion. The universal rulership implied in the statement 
that, dwelling within, it rules the entire aggregate of created 
beings, inclusive of the gods, and so on, is an appropriate 

K 2 



132 


VEDANTA-SIJTRAS. 


attribute of the highest Self, since omnipotence depends 
on (the omnipotent ruler) being the cause of all created 
things. — The qualities of Selfhood and immortality also, 
which are mentioned in the passage, 'He is thy Self, the 
ruler within, the immortal,’ belong in their primary sense to 
the highest Self, — Further, the passage, Tie whom the earth 
does not know,’ which declares that the internal ruler is not 
known by the earth-deity, shows him to be different from 
that deity ; for the deity of the earth knows itself to be the 
earth. — The attributes ‘ unseen,’ ‘ unheard,’ also point to 
the highest Self, which is devoid of shape and other sensible 
qualities, — The objection that the highest Self is destitute 
of the organs of action, and hence cannot be a ruler, is 
without force, because organs of action may be ascribed to 
him owing to the organs of action of those whom he rules. — 
If it should be objected that [if we once admit an internal 
ruler in addition to the individual soul] we are driven to 
assume again another and another ruler ad infinitum ; we 
reply that this is not the case, as actually there is no other 
ruler (but the highest Self ^). The objection would be valid 
only in the case of a difference of rulers actually existing. 
— For all these reasons, the internal ruler is no other but the 
highest Self. 

19. And (the internal ruler is) not that which the 
Snir^ti assumes, (viz. the pradhana,) on account of 
the statement of qualities not belonging to it. 

Good so far, a Sdnkhya opponent resumes. The attributes, 
however, of not being seen, &c., belong also to the pradhina 
assumed by the Sankhya-smrfti, which is acknowledged to 
be devoid of form and other sensible qualities. For their 

^ According to Scripture, NirankujaOT sarvaniyantritva^/z .yrauta?;^ 
na kz. tddrhe sarvaniyantari bhedo na Mnumana^ ^lutibhaditam 
uttish/z^ati. Ananda Giri. Or else, as Go. An. remarks, we may ex- 
plain : as the highest Self is not really different from the individual 
soul. So also Bhamatt : Na j^Snavasth^, na hi niyantrantaia?/^ teiia 
niyamyate ki»z tu yo ^tvo niyant^ lokasiddha/^ sa paraindtmevo- 
p'Mhyava/^MedakalpitabhedaA. 




I ADHYAYA, 2 pAdA, 20. 


133 


Smr/ti says, ‘ Undiscoverable, unknowable, as if wholly in 
sleep ’ (Manu I, 5 )- To this pradhana also the attribute of 
rulership belongs, as it is the cause of all effects. Therefore 
the internal ruler may be understood to denote the pradhdna. 
The pradhdna has, indeed, been set aside already by the 
Sutra I, I, 5, but we bring it forward again, because we find 
that attributes belonging to it, such as not being seen and 
the like, are mentioned in Scripture. 

To this argumentation the Sutrakdra replies that the word 
‘internal ruler’ cannot denote the pradhana, because qualities 
not belonging to the latter are stated. For, although the 
pradhana may be spoken of as not being seen. See., it cannot 
be spoken of as seeing, since the Sankhyas admit it to be 
non-intelligent. But the scriptural passage which forms the 
complement to the passage about the internal ruler {Qri. Up. 
Ill, 7, 23) says expressly, ‘ Unseen but seeing, unheard but 
hearing, unperceived but perceiving, unknown but knowing/ 
— And Selfhood also cannot belong to the pradhdna. 

Well, then, if the term ‘internal ruler’ cannot be admitted 
to denote the pradhana, because the latter is neither a Self 
nor seeing ; let us suppose it to denote the embodied (indi- 
vidual) soul, which is intelligent, and therefore hears, sees, 
perceives, knows ; which is internal (pratya/l/^), and there- 
fore of the nature of Self ; and which is immortal, because 
it is able to enjoy the fruits of its good and evil actions. 
It is, moreover, a settled matter that the attributes of not 
being seen, &c., belong to the embodied soul, because the 
agent of an action, such as seeing, cannot at the same time 
be the object of the action. This is declared in scriptural 
passages also, as, for instance (Brf. Up. Ill, 4, 2), ‘Thou 
couldst not see the seer of sight/ The individual soul is, 
moreover, capable of inwardly ruling the complex of the 
organs of action, as it is the enjoyer. Therefore the internal 
ruler is the embodied soul. — To this reasoning the following 
Siitra replies. 


20. And the embodied soul (also cannot be under- 
stood by the internal ruler), for both also (i. e. both 


134 


VEDANTA-S{)TRAS. 


recensions of the Br/had Ara;^yaka) speak of it as 
different (from the internal ruler). 

The word ‘ not ’ (in the Sutra) has to be supplied from 
the preceding Sutra. Although the attributes of seeing, &c., 
belong to the individual soul, still as the soul is limited by 
its adjuncts, as the ether is by a jar, it is not capable of 
dwelling completely within the earth and the other beings 
mentioned, and to rule them. Moreover, the followers of 
both jakhas, i. e. the Kawvas as well as the Madhyandinas, 
speak in their texts of the individual soul as different from 
the internal ruler, viz. as constituting, like the earth, and so 
on, his abode and the object of his rule. The Ka;^vas read 
(B;7. Up. Ill, 7, 23), ‘ He who dwells in knowledge ; ’ the 
Madhyandinas, ‘ He who dwells in the Self.’ If the latter 
reading is adopted, the word ‘Self’ denotes the individual 
soul ; if the former, the individual soul is denoted by the 
word ‘knowledge;’ for the individual soul consists of 
knowledge. It is therefore a settled matter that some 
being different from the individual soul, viz. the lord, is 
denoted by the term ‘ internal ruler.’ — But how, it may be 
asked, is it possible that there should be within one body 
two seers, viz. the lord who rules internally and the individual 
soul different from him ? — Why — we ask in return — should 
that be impossible? — Because, the opponent replies, it is 
contrary to scriptural passages, such as, ‘ There is no other 
seer but he,’ &c,, which deny that there is any seeing, hearing, 
perceiving, knowing Self, but the internal ruler under dis- 
cussion. — May, we rejoin, that passage not have the purpose 
of denying the existence of another ruler? — No, the opponent 
replies, for there is no occasion for another ruler (and 
therefore no occasion for denying his existence), and the 
text does not contain any specification, (but merely denies 
the existence of any other seer in general.) 

We therefore advance the following final refutation of the 
opponent’s objection. — The declaration of the difference of 
the embodied Self and the internal ruler has its reason in 
the limiting adjunct, consisting of the organs of action, pre- 
sented by Nescience, and is not absolutely true. For the 



I ADHyAyA, 2 PADA, 2 I . 


135 


Self within is one only ; two internal Selfs are not possible. 
But owing to its limiting adjunct the one Self is practically 
treated as if it were two ; just as we make a distinction 
between the ether of the jar and the universal ether. Hence 
there is room for those scriptural passages which set forth 
the distinction of knower and object of knowledge, for per- 
ception and the other means of proof, for the intuitive 
knowledge of the apparent world, and for that part of 
Scripture which contains injunctions and prohibitions. In 
accordance with this, the scriptural passage, ‘ Where there 
is duality, as it were, there one sees another,’ declares that 
the whole practical world exists only in the sphere of 
Nescience; while the subsequent passage, ‘But when the 
Self only is all this, how should he see another?’ declares 
that the practical world vanishes in the sphere of true 
knowledge. 

21. That which possesses the attributes of invisi- 
bility and so on (is Brahman), on account of the 
declaration of attributes. 

Scripture says, ‘ The higher knowledge is this by which 
the Indestructible is apprehended. That which cannot 
be seen nor seized, which is without origin and qualities, 
without eyes and ears, without hands and feet, the eternal, 
all-pervading, omnipresent, infinitesimal, that which is im- 
perishable, that it is which the wdse regard as the source 
of all beings’ (Mu. Up. I, i, 5; 6 ). — Here the doubt arises 
whether the source of all beings which is spoken of as 
characterised by invisibility, &c. be the pradhana, or the 
embodied soul, or the highest Lord. 

We must, the purvapakshin says, understand by the 
source of all beings the non -intelligent pradhAna because 
(in the passage immediately subsequent to the one quoted) 
only non-intelligent beings are mentioned as parallel in- 
stances. ‘ As the spider sends forth and draws in its 
thread, as plants grow on the earth, as from the living 
man hairs spring forth on the head and the body, thus 
everything arises here from the Indestructible.’ — But, it 



VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


136 


may be objected, men and spiders which are here quoted 
as parallel instances are of intelligent nature. — No, the 
purvapakshin replies; for the intelligent being as such is 
not the source of the threads and the hair, but everybody 
knows that the non-intelligent body of the spider ruled 
by intelligence is the source of the threads ; and so in the 
case of man also. — While, moreover, in the case of the 
preceding Sutra, the pradh^na hypothesis could not be 
accepted, because, although some qualities mentioned, such 
as invisibility and so on, agreed with it, others such as being 
the seer and the like did not; we have here to do only 
with attributes such as invisibility which agree with the 
pradhana, no attribute of a contrary nature being men- 
tioned. — But the qualities mentioned in the complementary 
passage (Mu. Up. I, i, 9), ‘ He who knows all and perceives 
all,’ do not agree with the non-intelligent pradhana; how, 
then, can the source of all beings be interpreted to mean the 
pradhana ? — To this the purvapakshin replies : The passage, 

‘ The higher knowledge is that by which the Indestructible 
is apprehended, that which cannot be seen,’ &c., points, by 
means of the term ‘ the Indestructible,’ to the source of all 
beings characterised by invisibility and similar attributes. 
This same ‘ Indestructible ’ is again mentioned later on in 
the passage, ‘It is higher than the high Imperishable.’ 
Now that which in this latter passage is spoken of as 
higher than the Imperishable may possess the qualities 
of knowing and perceiving everything, while the pradhina 
denoted by the term ‘the Imperishable’ is the source of 
all beings. — If, howevei', the word ‘ source ’ (yoni) be taken 
in the sense of operative cause, we may by ‘ the source 
of the beings’ understand the embodied Self also, which, 
by means of merit and demerit, is the cause of the origin 
of the complex of things. 

To this we make the following reply. — That which here 
is spoken of as the source of all beings, distinguished by 
such qualities as invisibility and so on, can be the highest 
Lord only, nothing else. — Whereupon is this conclusion 
founded? — On the statement of attributes. For the clause, 
‘He who is all-knowing, all-perceiving,’ clearly states an 



I ADHYAyA, 2 pAdA, 21. 137 


attribute belonging to the highest .Lord only, since the 
attributes of knowing all and perceiving all cannot be 
predicated either of the non-intelligent pradhana or the 
embodied soul whose power of sight is narrowed by its 
limiting conditions. To the objection that the qualities 
of knowing and perceiving all are, in the passage under 
discussion, attributed to that which is higher than the 
source of all beings — which latter is denoted by the term 
‘ the Imperishable ' — not to the source itself, we reply that 
this explanation is inadmissible because the source of all 
beings, which — in the clause, ' From the Indestructible every- 
thing here arises ’ — is designated as the material cause of 
all created beings, is later on spoken of as all-knowing, 
and again as the cause of all created beings, viz. in the 
passage (I, i, 9), ‘From him who knows all and perceives 
all, whose brooding consists of knowledge, from him is 
born that Brahman, name, form, and food.’ As therefore 
the Indestructible which forms the general topic of dis- 
cussion is, owing to the identity of designation, recognised 
(as being referred to in the later passage also), we understand 
that it is the same Indestructible to which the attributes 
of knowing and perceiving all are ascribed. — We further 
maintain that also the passage, ‘ Higher than the high 
Imperishable,’ does not refer to any being different from 
the imperishable source of all beings which is the general 
topic of discussion. We conclude this from the circum- 
stance that the passage, ‘ He truly told that knowledge 
of Brahman through which he knows the imperishable 
true person,’ (I, a, 13 ; which passage leads on to the 
passage about that which is higher than the Imperishable,) 
merely declares that the imperishable source of all beings, 
distinguished by invisibility and the like — which formed 
the subject of the preceding chapter — will be discussed. 
The reason why that imperishable source is called higher 
than the high Imperishable, we shall explain under the next 
Sutra. — Moreover, two kinds of knowledge are enjoined 
there (in the Upanishad), a lower and a higher one. Of 
the lower one it is said that it comprises the Azg-veda and 
so on, and then the text continues, ‘ The higher knowledge 



VEDANTA-Sl^TRAS. 


138 


is that by which the Indestructible is apprehended.’ Here 
the Indestructible is declared to be the subject of the 
higher knowledge. If we now were to assume that the 
Indestructible distinguished by invisibility and like qualities 
is something different from the highest Lord, the know- 
ledge referring to it would not be the higher one. For 
the distinction of lower and higher knowledge is made on 
account of the diversity of their results, the former leading 
to mere worldly exaltation, the latter to absolute bliss ; and 
nobody would assume absolute bliss to result from the know- 
ledge of the pradhana. — Moreover, as on the view we are 
controverting the highest Self would be assumed to be 
something higher than the imperishable source of all 
beings, three kinds of knowledge would have to be ac- 
knowledged, while the text expressly speaks of two kinds 
only. — Further, the reference to the knowledge of every- 
thing being implied in the knowdedge of one thing — which 
is contained in the passage (I, i, 3), ‘Sir, what is that 
through which if it is known everything else becomes 
known ? ’ — is possible only if the allusion is to Brahman 
the Self of all, and not either to the pradhana which com- 
prises only what is non-inteiligent or to the enjoyer viewed 
apart from the objects of enjoyment. — The text, moreover, 
by introducing the knowledge of Brahman as the chief 
subject — which it does in the passage (I, i, i), ‘ He told the 
knowledge of Brahman, the foundation of all knowledge, 
to his eldest son Atharvan ’ — and by afterwards declaring 
that out of the two kinds of knowledge, viz. the lower 
one and the higher one, the higher one leads to the com- 
prehension of the Imperishable, shows that the knowledge 
of the Imperishable is the knowledge of Brahman. On the 
other hand, the term ‘knowledge of Brahman’ would 
become meaningless if that Imperishable which is to be 
comprehended by means of it were not Brahman. The 
lower knowledge of works which comprises the i?fg-veda, 
and so on, is mentioned preliminarily to the knowledge of 
Brahman for the mere purpose of glorifying the latter; 
as appears from the passages in which it (the lower know- 
ledge) is spoken of slightingly, such as (I, 2 , 7), ‘ But frail 



1 ADHYAYA, 2 PADA, 2 2. 


139 


deed are those boats, the sacrifices, the eighteen in 
lich this lower ceremonial has been told. Fools who 
aise this as the highest good are subject again and again 
old age and death.’ After these slighting remarks the 
xt declares that he who turns away from the lower 
lowledge is prepared for the highest one (I, 2, la), 
.et a Brahma;^a after he has examined all these worlds 
lich are gained by works acquire freedom from all desires, 
othing that is eternal (not made) can be gained by what 
not eternal (made). Let him in order to understand this 
ke fuel in his hand and approach a guru who is learned 
d dwells entirely in Brahman.’ — The remark that, because 
e earth and other non-intelligent things ai'e adduced as 
.rallel instances, that also which is compared to them, 
z. the source of all beings must be non-intelligent, is 
thout foundation, since it is not necessary that two 
ings of which one is compared to the other should be 
absolutely the same nature. The things, moreover, to 
lich the source of all beings is compared, viz, the earth 
;d the like, are material, while nobody would assume the 
urce of all beings to be material. — For all these reasons 
e source of all beings, which possesses the attributes 
invisibility and so on, is the highest Lord. 

2 2, The two others (i. e. the individual soul and 
e pradhana) are not (the source of all beings) be- 
.use there are stated distinctive attributes and 
fference. 

The source of all beings is the highest Lord, not either 
the two others, viz. the pradhana and the individual soul, 
. account of the following reason also. In the first place, 
e text distinguishes the source of all beings from the 
ibodied soul, as something of a different nature ; compare 
e passage (II, i, a), ‘That heavenly person is without 
)dy, he is both without and within, not produced, with- 
it breath and without mind, pure.’ The distinctive attri- 
Ltes mentioned here, such as being of a heavenly nature, 
d so on, can in no way belong to the individual soul. 



140 


vedAnta'S^tras. 


which erroneously considers itself to be limited by name 
and form as presented by Nescience, and erroneously imputes 
their attributes to itself. Therefore the passage manifestly 
refers to the Person which is the subject of all the Upanishads. 
— In the second place, the source of all beings which forms 
the general topic is represented in the text as something 
different from the pradhana, viz. in the passage, ‘ Higher 
than the high Imperishable.'’ Here the term ‘ Imperishable ’ 
means that undeveloped entity which represents the seminal 
potentiality of names and forms, contains the fine parts 
of the material elements, abides in the Lord, forms his 
limiting adjunct, and being itself no effect is high in com- 
parison to all effects; the whole phrase, 'Higher than the 
high Imperishable,’ which expresses a difference then 
clearly shows that the highest Self is meant here. — We do 
not on that account assume an independent entity called 
pradhana and say that the source of all beings is stated 
separately therefrom ; but if a pradhAna is to be assumed 
at all (in agreement with the common opinion) and if being 
assumed it is assumed of such a nature as not to be opposed 
to the statements of Scripture, viz. as the subtle cause of all 
beings denoted by the terms ‘ the Undeveloped ’ and so on, 
we have no objection to such an assumption, and declare 
that, on account of the separate statement therefrom, i.e. 
from that pradhana, ‘ the source of all beings ’ must mean 
the highest Lord. — A further argument in favour of the 
same conclusion is supplied by the next Sutra. 

23. And on account of its form being mentioned. 

Subsequently to the passage, ‘Higher than the high 
Imperishable,’ we meet (in the passage, ‘ From him is born 
breath,’ &c.) with a description of the creation of all things, 
from breath down to earth, and then with a statement of 
the form of this same source of beings as consisting of 
all created beings, ‘ Fire is his head, his eyes the sun and 
the moon, the quarters his ears, his speech the Vedas dis- 
closed, the wind his breath, his heart the universe ; from 
his feet came the earth; he is indeed the inner Self of 
all things.’ This statement of form can refer only to the 



I ADHYAyA, 2 PADA, 23. I4I 


highest Lord; and not either to the embodied soul, which, 
on account of its small power, cannot be the cause of all 
effects, or to the pradhdna, which cannot be the inner Self 
of all beings. We therefore conclude that the source of all 
beings is the highest Lord, not either of the other two. — 
But wherefrom do you conclude that the quoted declara- 
tion of form refers to the source of all beings ? — From the 
general topic, we reply. The word ‘ he ’ (in the clause, ‘ He 
is indeed the inner Self of all things ’) connects the passage 
with the general topic. As the source of all beings consti- 
tutes the general topic, the whole passage, from ‘From him 
is born breath/ up to, ‘ He is the inner Self of all beings/ 
refers to that same source. Similarly, when in ordinary 
conversation a certain teacher forms the general topic of the 
talk, the phrase, ‘ Study under him ; he knows the Veda and 
the Veddiigas thoroughly/ as a matter of course, refers to 
that same teacher. — But how can a bodily form be ascribed 
to the source of all beings which is characterised by invisi- 
bility and similar attributes? — The statement as to its nature, 
we reply, is made for the purpose of showing that the source 
of all beings is the Self of all beings, not of showing that it is 
of a bodily nature. The case is analogous to such passages 
as, ‘ I am food, I am food, I am the eater of food ' (Taitt. 
Up. Ill, 10, 6 ). — Others, however, are of opinion^ that the 
statement quoted does not refer to the source of all beings, 
because that to which it refers is spoken of as something- 
produced. For, on the one hand, the immediately pre- 
ceding passage (‘ From him is born health, mind, and all 
organs of sense, ether, air, light, water, and the earth, the 
support of all ’) speaks of the aggregate of beings from air 
down to earth as something produced, and, on the other 

^ Vrfttikrfdvyakhyam dhshayati, Go. An. ; ekadejina^ dushayati, 
Aiianda Giri; tad elat paramatenakshepasamS.dhantbhydOT vyi- 
khydya svamatena vyaiash/e, puna.^ jabdo^pi pfirvasmad vijeshaw 
dyotayann asyesh/ata?;^ sfi/^ayati, Bhamatt. — The statement of the 
two former commentators must be understood to mean — in agree- 
ment with the Bhimati — that dafikara is now going to refute the 
preceding explanation by the statement of his own view. Thus 
Go. An. later on explains ‘ asmin pakshe * by ‘ svapakshe/ 




142 


VEDANTA-S^JTRAS. 


hand, a passage met with later on From him comes Agni, 
the sun being his fuel,’ up to 'All herbs and juices’) ex- 
presses itself to the same purpose. How then should all at 
once, in the midst of these two passages (which refer to the 
creation), a statement be made about the nature of the source 
of all beings? — The attribute of being the Self of all beings 
(which above was said to be mentioned in the passage about 
the creation, ‘Fire is his head,’ &c., is not mentioned there but) 
is stated only later on in a passage subsequent to that which 
refers to the creation, viz, ‘ The Person is all this, sacrifice,’ 
&c. (II, I, 10). — Now, we see that jrruti as well as smriti 
speaks of the birth of Pra^apati, whose body is this three- 
fold world ; compare Afg-veda Sa?;di. X, 131, i, ‘Hira;zya- 
garbha arose in the beginning ; he was the one born Lord 
of things existing. He established the earth and this sky ; 
to what God shall we offer our oblation ? ’ where the expres- 
sion 'arose’ means ‘he was born.’ And in smrfti we read, 
‘ He is the first embodied one, he is called the Person ; as 
the primal creator of the beings Brahman was evolved in 
the beginning.’ This Person which is (not the original 
Brahman but) an effect (like other created beings) may be 
called the internal Self of all beings (as it is called in II, i, 4), 
because in the form of the Self of breath it abides in the 
Selfs of all beings. — On this latter explanation (according to 
which the passage, ‘ Fire is his head,’ &c., does not describe 
the nature of the highest Lord, and can therefore not be 
referred to in the Sutra) the declaration as to the Lord 
being the ‘ nature ’ of all which is contained in the passage, 
‘ The Person is all this, sacrifice,’ &c., must be taken as the 
reason for establishing the highest Lord, (i. e. as the passage 
which, according to the Sfitra, proves that the source of all 
beings is the highest Lord ^.) 

^ The question is to what passage the ‘ rfipopanyasat ’ of the 
Sfitra refers. — According to the opinion set forth first it refers to 
Mu. Up. II, I, 4 ff. — But, according to the second view, II, i, 4 to 
II, I, 9, cannot refer to the source of all beings, i. e. the highest 
Self, because that entire passage describes the creation, the inner 
Self of which is not the highest Self but Pi-a^S.pati, i. e. the Hirawya- 
garbha or Shtrltman of the later Vedanta, who is himself an 



I ADHYAyA, 2 PADA, 24. 


143 


24. Vai^vanara (is the highest Lord) on account of 
the distinction qualifying the common terms (VaLva- 
nara and Self). 

(In Kh. Up. V, II ff.) a discussion begins with the words, 

‘ What is our Self, what is Brahman ? ’ and is carried on in 
the passage, ‘ You know at present that Vaijrvanara Self, 
tell us that ; ’ after that it is declared with reference to 
Heaven, sun, air, ether, water, and earth, that they are con- 
nected with the qualities of having good light, &c., and, in 
order to disparage devout meditation on them singly, that 
they stand to the Vahvanara in the relation of being his head, 
&c., merely ; and then finally (V, 18) it is said, ‘ But he who 
meditates on the Vaijrvinara Self as measured by a span, as 
abhivimina he eats food in all worlds, in all beings, in all 
Selfs. Of that VaLvanara Self the head is Sute^s (having 
good light), the eyeVhvariipa (multiform), the breath Prfthag- 
vartman (moving in various courses), the trunk Bahula (full), 
the bladder Rayi (wealth), the feet the earth, the chest the 
altar, the hairs the grass on the altar, the heart the Gdrhapatya 
fire, the mind the Anvahirya fire, the mouth the Ahavaniya 
fire.’ — Here the doubt arises whether by the term ‘ Vahv^- 
nara ’ we have to understand the gastric fire, or the elemental 
fire, or the divinity presiding over the latter, or the embodied 
soul, or the highest Lord. — But what, it may be asked, gives 
rise to this doubt? — The circumstance, we reply, of ‘ Vahv^- 
nara ’ being employed as a common term for the gastric fire, 
the elemental fire, and the divinity of the latter, while ‘ Self’ 
is a term applying to the embodied soul as well as to the 
highest Lord. Hence the doubt arises which meaning of 
the term is to be accepted and which to be set aside. 

Which, then, is the alternative to be embraced? — Vai- 
jvdnara, the purvapakshin maintains, is the gastric fire, 
because we meet, in some passages, with the term used in 

‘ effect,’ and who is called the inner Self, because he is the breath 
of life (pr^wa) in everything. — Hence the Shtra must be connected 
with another passage, and that passage is found in II, i, 10, where 
it is said that the Person (i. e. the highest Self) is all this, &c. 

^ About which term see later on. 



144 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS, 


that special sense ; so, for instance (Bn. Up. V, 9), ‘ Agni 
Vaij'V&nara is the fire within man by which the food that is 
eaten is cooked.' — Or else the term may denote fire in general, 
as we see it used in that sense also ; so, for instance (A/g- 
veda Sawh. X, 88, 13), ‘ For the whole world the gods have 
made the Agni Vairvanara a sign of the days.’ Or, in the 
third place, the word may denote that divinity whose body 
is fire. For passages in which the term has that sense are 
likewise met with ; compare, for instance, Afg-veda Sa^wh. I, 
98, I, ‘ May we be in the favour of Vabvinara ; for he is the 
king of the beings, giving pleasure, of ready grace ; ’ this 
and similar passages properly applying to a divinity 
endowed with power and similar qualities. Perhaps it 
will be urged against the preceding explanations, that, 
as the word VaUvdnara is used in co-ordination with the 
term ‘ Self,’ and as the term ‘ Self’ alone is used in the intro- 
ductory passage (‘ What is our Self, what is Brahman ? ’), 
Vairvinara has to be understood in a modified sense, so as 
to be in harmony with the term Self. Well, then, the 
purvapakshin rejoins, let us suppose that VaUv^nara is 
the embodied Self which, as being an enjoyer, is in close 
vicinity to the Vabvdnara fire,’- (i.e. the fire within the 
body,) and with which the qualification expressed by 
the term, ‘ Measured by >a span,’ well agrees, since it is 
restricted by its limiting condition (viz. the body and so 
on). — In any case it is evident that the term Vairvanara 
does not denote the highest Lord. 

To this we make the following reply. — The word Vai.s-vd- 
nara denotes the highest Self, on account of the distinction 
qualifying the two general terms. — Although the term ‘ Self,’ 
as well as the term ‘ VaLvanara,’ has various meanings — 
the latter term denoting three beings while the former 
denotes two — yet we observe a distinction from which we 
conclude that both terms can here denote the highest Lord 
only ; viz. in the passage, ‘ Of that VaLvanara Self the head 
is Sute^as,’ &c. For it is clear that that passage refers to 
the highest Lord in so far as he is distinguished by having 
heaven, and so on, for his head and limbs, and in so far as 

^ Slrtre laksha;>2ayt vaijv&narajabdopapaltim aha tasyeti. An. Gi. 




I ADHYAyA, 2 PADA, 25. 


145 


he has entered into a different state (viz. into the state of 
being the Self of the threefold world ) ; represents him, in 
fact, for the purpose of meditation, as the internal Self of 
everything. As such the absolute Self may be represented, 
because it is the cause of everything; for as the cause 
virtually contains all the states belonging to its effects, the 
heavenly world, and so on, may be spoken of as the members 
of the highest Self. — Moreover, the result which Scripture 
declares to abide in all worlds — viz. in the passage, ‘ He eats 
food in all worlds, in all beings, in all Selfs’ — is possible only 
if we take the term Vaii'v^nara to denote the highest Self. — 
The same remark applies to the declaration that all the sins 
are burned of him who has that knowledge, ‘ Thus all his 
sins are burned,’ &c. (If A Up. V, 24, 3). — Moreover, we 
meet at the beginning of the chapter with the words ‘ Self’ 
and ‘ Brahman ; ’ viz. in the passage, ‘ What is our Self, 
what is Brahman ? ’ Now these are marks of Brahman, and 
indicate the highest Lord only. Hence he only can be 
meant by the term VaLvdnara. 

25. (And) because that which is stated by SmWti 
(i. e. the shape of the highest Lord as described by 
Smrfti) is an inference (i. e. an indicatory mark from 
which we infer the meaning of Auti). 

The highest Lord only is Vairvanara, for that reason also 
that Smrfti ascribes to the highest Lord only a shape con- 
sisting of the threefold world, the fire constituting his mouth, 
the heavenly world his head, &c. So, for instance, in the 
following passage, ‘ He whose mouth is fire, whose head 
the heavenly world, whose navel the ether, whose feet the 
earth, whose eye the sun, whose ears the regions, reverence 
to him the Self of the world.’ The shape described here in 
Smrfti allows us to infer a S'ruti passage on which the Smrfti 
rests, and thus constitutes an inference, i. e. a sign indicatory 
of the word ‘ Vabvdnara ’ denoting the highest Lord. For, 
although the quoted Srn^'fti passage contains a glorification^, 

^ And as such might be said not to require a basis for its 
statements. 

C34] L 





146 


VEDANTA-S^JTRAS. 


still even a glorification in the form in which it there appears 
is not possible, unless it has a Vedic passage to rest on. — 
Other Smrfti passages also may be quoted in connexion 
with this Sutra, so, for instance, the following one, ‘ He 
whose head the wise declare to be the heavenly world, whose 
navel the ether, whose eyes sun and moon, whose ears the 
regions, and whose feet the earth, he is the inscrutable 
leader of all beings.’ 

26. If it be maintained that (Vaii'vanara is) not (the 
highest Lord) on account of the term (viz. Vai^-vi- 
nara, having a settled different meaning), &c., and 
on account of his abiding within (which is a charac- 
teristic of the gastric fire) ; (we say) no, on account 
of the perception (of the highest Lord), being taught 
thus (viz. in the gastric fire), and on account of the 
impossibility (of the heavenly world, &c. being the 
head, &c. of the gastric fire), and because they (the 
Va^asaneyins) read of him (viz. the VaLvinara) as 
man (which term cannot apply to the gastric fire). 

Here the following objection is raised. — Vabvanara can- 
not be the highest Lord, on account of the term, &c., and 
on account of the abiding within. The tei'm, viz. the term 
Vabvanara, cannot be applied to the highest Lord, because 
the settled use of language assigns to it a different sense. 
Thus, also, with regard to the term Agni (fire) in the pas- 
sage ( 5 at. Bra. X, 6, i, ii), ‘ He is the Agni Vabvanara.’ 
The word ‘ &c.’ (in the Sutra) hints at the fiction concerning 
the three sacred fires, the g^rhapatya being represented as 
the heart, and so on, of the Vahvanara Self {Kh. Up. V, 

18, 2^). — Moreover, the passage, ‘Therefore the first food 
which a man may take is in the place of homa ’ {Kh, Up. V, 

19, i), contains a glorification of (Vabvanara) being the abode 
of the oblation to Prawa^. For these reasons wehave to iinder- 

^ Na /(’a garhapalyddihn'dayadit^ brahmaraa^ sambhavint Bht- 
matt 

® Na pra/^ahutyadhikara«ata s nyatra ^a/Aaidgner yu^yate. 
Bhdmatl. 



I ADHYAYA, 2 PADA, 26. 


147 


stand by Vawvanara the gastric fire. — Moreover, Scripture 
speaks of the Vawvinara as abiding within, ‘ He knows him 
abiding within man ; ’ which again applies to the gastric fire 
only. — With reference to the averment that on account of the 
specifications contained in the passage, ‘His head is Sute^as,’ 
8z:c., Vaijvanara is to be explained as the highest Self, we 
(the purvapakshin) ask : How do you reach the decision 
that those specifications, although agreeing with both inter- 
pretations, must he assumed to refer to the highest Lord 
only, and not to the gastric fire ? — Or else we may assume 
that the passage speaks of the elemental fire which abides 
within and without ; for that that fire is also connected with 
the heavenly world, and so on, we understand from the mantra, 

‘ He who with his light has extended himself over earth 
and heaven, the two halves of the world, and the atmo- 
sphere' ( 7 ?fg-veda Sawh. X, 88 , 3). — Or else the attribute of 
having the heavenly world, and so on, for its members may, 
on account of its power, be attributed to that divinity which 
has the elemental fire for its body. — Therefore Vamvanara 
is not the highest Lord. 

To all this we reply as follows. — Your assertions are 
unfounded, ‘ because there is taught the perception in this 
manner.' The reasons (adduced in the former part of the 
Sutra), viz. the term, and so on, are not sufficient to make 
us abandon the interpretation according to which VaLvanara 
is the highest Lord. — Why? — On account of perception being 
taught in this manner, i. e. without the gastric fire being set 
aside. For the passages quoted teach the perception of the 
highest Lord i n the gastric fire, analogously to such pas- 
sages as ‘ Let a man meditate on the mind as Brahman ’ 
(W/a Up. Ill, 18, i). — Or else they teach that the object of 
perception is the highest Lord, in so far as he has the 
gastric fire called VaLvanaj'a for his limiting condition ; ana- 
logously to such passages as ‘ He who consists of mind, 
whose body is breath, whose form is light’ (IC/i. Up. Ill, 
14, 2 ^). If it were the aim of the passages about the VaL- 

^ According to the former explanation the gastric fire is to be 
looked on as the outward manifestation (pratika) of the highest 
Lord ; according to the latter as his limiting condition. 

L 2 





148 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


vinara to make statements not concerning the highest Lord, 
but merely concerning the gastric fire, there would be no 
possibility of specifications such as contained in the passage 
‘ His head is Sute^as,’ &c. That also on the assumption of 
Vairvinara being either the divinity of fire or the elemental 
fire no room is to be found for the said specifications, we 
shall show under the following Sutra. — Moreover, if the 
mere gastric fire were meant, there would be room only 
for a declaration that it abides within man, not that it is 
man. But, as a matter of fact, the Vi^asaneyins speak of 
him — in their sacred text — as man, ‘ This Agni Vaij-vanara 
is man ; he who knows this Agni VaLvanara as man-like, as 
abiding within man,’ &c. (S'at. Bra. X, 6, i, ii). The highest 
Lord, on the other hand, who is the Self of everything, may 
be spoken of as well as man, as abiding within man. — Those 
who, in the latter part of the Sutra, read ‘ man-like ’ (puru- 
shavidhara) instead of ‘ man ’ (purusham), wish to express 
the following meaning : If VaLvanara were assumed to be 
the gastric fire only, he might be spoken of as abiding within 
man indeed, but not as man-like. But the V^'asaneyins do 
speak of him as man-like, ‘ He who knows him as man-like, 
as abiding within man.’ — The meaning of the term man-like 
is to be concluded from the context, whence it will be seen 
that, with reference to nature, it means that the highest Lord 
has the heaven for his head, &c., and is based on the earth ; 
and with reference to man, that he forms the head, See., and 
is based on the chin (of the devout worshipper i). 

27. For the same reasons (the VaLvaiiara) cannot 
be the divinity (of fire), or the element (of fire). 

The averment that the fanciful attribution of members 
contained in the passage ‘His head is Sute^as,’ &c. may 
apply to the elemental fire also which from the mantras 
is seen to be connected with the heavenly world, &c., or else 
to the divinity whose body is fire, on account of its power, 
is refuted by the following remark: For the reasons 

^ I. e. that he may be fancifully identified with the head and so 
on of the devout worshipper. 



I ADIIYAYA, 2 PADA, .28. 


149 


already stated VaiVv^nara is neither the divinity nor the 
clement. For to the elemental fire which is mere heat 
and light the heavenly world and so on cannot properly 
be ascribed as head and so on, because an effect cannot 
be the Self of another effect. — Again, the heavenly world 
cannot be ascribed as head, &c. to the divinity of fire, in 
spite of the power of the latter ; for, on the one hand, it is 
not a cause (but a mere effect), and on the other hand 
its power depends on the highest Lord. Against all these 
interpretations there lies moreover the objection founded 
on the inapplicability of the term ‘ Self.’ 

28. Gsiimim (declares that there is) no contradic- 
tion even on the assumption of a direct (worship of 
the highest Lord as VaLvanara). 

Above (Sutra 26) it has been said that VaLvanara is 
the highest Lord, to be meditated upon as having the 
gastric fire either for his outward manifestation or for his 
limiting condition ; which interpretation was accepted in 
deference to the circumstance that he is spoken of as 
abiding within — and so on. — The teacher ffaimini however 
is of opinion that it is not necessary to have recourse to 
the assumption of an outward manifestation or limiting 
condition, and that there is no objection to refer the 
passage about VaLvanara to the direct worship of the 
highest Lord. — But, if you reject the interpretation based 
on the gastric fire, you place yourself in opposition to the 
statement that Vaij-vdnara abides within, and to the reasons 
founded on the term, &c. (Su. 26). — To this we reply that 
we in no way place ourselves in opposition to the statement 
that VaLvdnara abides within. For the passage, ‘ He knows 
him as man-like, as abiding within man/ does not by any 
means refer to the gastric fire, the latter being neither 
the general topic of discussion nor having been mentioned 
by name before. — What then does it refer to ? — It refers to 
that which forms the subject of discussion, viz. that similarity 
to man (of the highest Self) which is fancifully found in the 
members of man from the upper part of the head down to 
the chin ; the text therefore says, ' He knows him aS man-like, 



150 


vedanta-sOtras. 


as abiding within man/ just as we say of a branch that it 
abides within the treeh — Or else we may adopt another 
interpretation and say that after the highest Self has been 
represented as having the likeness to man as a limiting 
condition, with regard to nature as well as to man, the 
passage last quoted (‘ He knows him as abiding within 
man ’} speaks of the same highest Self as the mere witness 
(sakshin ; i. e. as the pure Self, non-related to the limiting 
conditions). — The consideration of the context having thus 
shown that the highest Self has to be resorted to for the 
interpretation of the passage, the term ‘ Vawvanara’ must 
denote the highest Self in some way or other. The word 
‘ Vbvanara ’ is to be explained either as ‘ he who is all 
and man (i. e. the individual soul),’ or ‘ he to whom souls 
belong ’ (in so far as he is their maker or ruler), and thus 
denotes the highest Self which is the Self of all. And the 
form ‘ Vai.rv§.nara ’ has the same meaning as ‘ Virvinara/ the 
taddhita-suffix, by which the former word is derived from 
the latter, not changing the meaning ; just as in the case 
of rikshasa (derived from rakshas), and vdyasa (derived 
from vayas). — The word ‘Agni’ also may denote the 
highest Self if we adopt the etymology agni=:agrafzt, i. e. 
he who leads in front. — As the Girhapatya-fire finally, and 
as the abode of the oblation to breath the highest Self 
may be represented because it is the Self of all. 

But, if it is assumed that Vabvdnara denotes the highest 
Self, how can Scripture declare that he is measured by a 
span? — On the explanation of this difficulty we now enter. 

29. On account of the manifestation, so Amiara- 
thya opines. 

The circumstance of the highest Lord who transcends 
all measure being spoken of as measured by a span has 
for its reason ‘ manifestation.’ The highest Lord manifests 

^ Whereby we mean not that it is inside the tree, but that it 
forms a part of the tree. — The Vaijv^nara Self is identified with the 
different members of the body, and these members abide within, 
i.e. form parts of the body. 



I ADHYAYA, 2 PADA, 3 1. I 5 I 


himself as measured by a span, i. e. he specially manifests 
himself for the benefit of his worshippers in some special 
places, such as the heart and the like, where he may be 
perceived. Hence, according to the opinion of the teacher 
Aj-raarathya, the scriptural passage which speaks of him 
who is measured by a span may refer to the highest Lord. 

30. On account of remembrance; so Bdclari opines. 

Or else the highest Lord may be called ‘ measured by 
a span ' because he is remembered by means of the mind 
which is seated in the heart which is measured by a span. 
Similarly, barley-corns which are measured by means of 
prasthas are themselves called prasthas. It must be ad- 
mitted that barley-grains themselves have a certain size 
which is merely rendered manifest through their being 
connected with a prastha measure ; while the highest Lord 
himself does not possess a size to be I'endered manifest 
by his connexion with the heart. Still the remembrance 
(of the Lord by means of the mind) may be accepted as 
offering a certain foundation for the S’ruti passage concern- 
ing him who is measured by a span. — Or else^ the Sutra 
may be interpreted to mean that the Lord, although not 
really measured by a span, is to be remembered (meditated 
upon) as being of the measure of a span ; whereby the 
passage is furnished with an appropriate sense. — Thus the 
passage about him who is measured by a span may, ac- 
cording to the opinion of the teacher Bddari, be referred 
to the highest Lord, on account of remembrance. 

31. On the ground of imaginative identification 
(the highest Lord may be called prade.ramdtra), 
(^aimini thinks ; for thus (Scripture) declares. 

Or else the passage about him who is measured by a 
span may be considered to rest on imaginative combin- 
ation. — Why? — Because the passage of the Va^asaneyi- 


^ Parinia? 2 asya hr/dayadvdraropitasya smaryama^e katham firopo 
vishayavishayitvena bhedSd ity firankya vyakh}4ntaram dha pra- 
de^eti. Ananda Giri. 




152 


VEDANTA-SCSTRAS. 


brahma?^a which treats of the same topic identifies heaven, 
earth, and so on — which are the members of Vaijvanara 
viewed as the Self of the threefold world— with certain 
parts of the human frame, viz. the parts comprised between 
the upper part of the head and the chin, and thus declares 
the imaginative identity of Vahvanara with something 
whose measure is a span. There we read, ‘ The Gods 
indeed reached him, knowing him as measured by a span 
as it were. Now I will declare them (his members) to 
you so as to identify him (the Vai^vanara) with that whose 
measure is a span; thus he said. Pointing to the upper 
part of the head he said : This is what stands above (i. e. 
the heavenly world) as Vauvanara (i. e. the head of Vaij- 
vanara ^). Pointing to the eyes he said : This is he with 
good light (i. e. the sun) as Vaijvinara (i.e. the eye of 
V.). Pointing to the nose he said : This is he who moves 
on manifold paths (i. e. the air) as Vaii'vanara (i. e. the 
breath of V.). Pointing to the space (ether) within his 
mouth he said : This is the full one (i e. the ether) as 
VaNvdnara. Pointing to the saliva within his mouth he 
said : This is wealth as Vauvinara (i. e. the water in the 
bladder of V.). Pointing to the chin he said : This is 
the base as Vauvinara (i. e, the feet of V.).’ — Although 
in the Va^asaneyi-brahma;^a the heaven is denoted as 
that which has the attribute of standing above and the 
sun as that which has the attribute of good light, while 
in the /iT/^andogya the heaven is spoken of as having good 
light and the sun as being multiform ; still this difference 
does not interfere (with the unity of the vidyd) because 
both texts equally use the term ‘ measured by a span,’ and 
because all jakh^s intimate the same. — The above explana- 
tion of the term ‘measured by a span,’ which rests on 
imaginative identification, the teacher G'aimini considers the 
most appropriate one. 

32. Moreover they (the (Tfi.bfilas) speak of him 

^ Atra sarvatra vaijvanararabdas tadahgapara//. Go. An. 

^ Which unity entitles us to use the passage from the Nat. BrS. 
for the explanation of the passage from the Kh, Up. 




I ADHYAyA, 2 PADA, 32 . 1 53 

(the highest Lord) in that (i. e. the interstice between 
the top of the head and the chin which is measured 
by a span). 

Moreover the (Jibalas speak in their text of the highest 
Lord as being in the interstice between the top of the head 
and the chin. ‘ The imcvolved infinite Self abides in the 
avimukta (i. e. the non-released soul). Where does that 
avimukta abide? It abides in the Ya.Ya.nt and the Nasi, in 
the middle. What is that Vara;/a, what is that Ndsi ? ’ The 
text thereupon etymologises the term Vara?/a as that which 
wards off (vdrayati) all evil done by the senses, and the 
term Nasi as that which destroys (nai-ayati) all evil done 
by the senses ; and then continues, ‘ And what is its place ? 
— The place where the eyebrows and the nose join. That is 
the joining place of the heavenly world (represented by the 
upper part of the head) and of the other (i. e. the earthly 
world represented by the chin).’ {Gabala Up. I.) — Thus 
it appears that the scriptural statement which ascribes 
to the highest Lord the measure of a span is appropriate. 
That the highest Lord is called abhivimana refers to his 
being the inward Self of all. As such he is directly 
measured, i. e. known by all animate beings. Or else 
the word may be explained as ‘ he who is near everywhere 
— as the inward Self — and who at the same time is measure- 
less ’ (as being infinite). Or else it may denote the highest 
Lord as him who, as the cause of the world, measures it 
out, i. e. creates it. By all this it is proved that Vabvanara 
is the highest Lord. 



154 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


THIRD PADA. 

Reverence to the highest Self! 

I. The abode of heaven, earth, and so on (is 
Brahman), on account of the term ‘ own,’ i. e. Self 

We read (Mu. Up. II, o,, 5), ‘ He in whom the heaven, the 
earth, and the sky are woven, the mind also with all the 
vital airs, know him alone as the Self, and leave off other 
words ! He is the bridge of the Immortal.’ — Here the doubt 
arises whether the abode which is intimated by the state- 
ment of the heaven and so on being woven in it is the 
highest Brahman or something else. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the abode is something 
else, on account of the expression, ‘ It is the bridge of the 
Immortal’ For, he says, it is known from every-day ex- 
perience that a bridge presupposes some further bank to 
which it leads, while it is impossible to assume something 
further beyond the highest Brahman, which in Scripture is 
called ‘endless, without a further shore’ (Bn. Up. 11,4, 

Now if the abode is supposed to be something different 
from Brahman, it must be supposed to be either the pra- 
dhana known from Smn'ti, which, as being the (general) 
cause, may be called the (general) abode ; or the air known 
from Fruti, of which it is said (Bn. Up. Ill, 7, 2, ‘ Air is that 
thread, O Gautama. By air as by a thread, O Gautama, 
this world and the other world and all beings are strung 
together’), that it supports all things ; or else the embodied 
soul which, as being the enjoyer, may be considered as an 
abode with reference to the objects of its fruition. 

Against this view we argue with the sutrakira as follows : — 

‘ Of the world consisting of heaven, earth, and so on, which , 
in the quoted passage is spoken of as woven (upon some- 
thing), the highest Brahman must be the abode.’ — Why? — 
On account of the word ‘ own,’ i. e. on account of the word 
‘Self.’ For we meet with the word ‘Self’ in the pas- 
sage, ‘Know him alone as the Self.’ This term ‘Self’ is 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, I. 


155 


thoroughly appropriate only if we understand the highest 
Self and not anything else. — (To propound another inter- 
pretation of the phrase ‘ svarabdat ’ enaployed in the Sutra.) 
Sometimes also Brahman is spoken of in .Sruti as the 
general abode by its own terms (i.e. by terms properly 
designating Brahman), as, for instance {Kh. Up. VI. 8, 4), 
‘ All these creatures, my dear, have their root in the being, 
their abode in the being, their rest in the being — (Or 
else we have to explain ‘ sva^abdena ’ as follows), In 
the passages preceding and following the passage under 
discussion Brahman is glorified with its own names ^ ; 
cp. Mu. Up, II, I, 10, ‘The Person is all this, sacrifice, 
penance. Brahman, the highest Immortal,’ and II, 2, ii, 
‘ That immortal Brahman is before, is behind, Brahman is 
to the right and left.’ Here, on account of mention being 
made of an abode and that which abides, and on account of 
the co-ordination expressed in the passage, ‘ Brahman is 
all’ (Mu. Up. II, 2, ii),a suspicion might arise that Brah- 
man is of a manifold variegated nature, just as in the case 
of a tree consisting of different parts we distinguish branches, 
stem, and root. In order to remove this suspicion the text 
declares (in the passage under discussion), ‘Know him 
alone as the Self.’ The sense of which is : The Self is not 
to be known as manifold, qualified by the universe of effects ; 
you are rather to dissolve by true knowledge the universe 
of effects, which is the mere product of Nescience, and to 
know that one Self, which is the general abode, as uniform. 
Just as when somebody says, ‘Bring that on which Deva- 
datta sits,’ the person addressed brings the chair only (the 
abode of Devadatta), not Devadatta himself; so the pas- 
sage, ‘ Know him alone as the Self,’ teaches that the object 
to be known is the one uniform Self which constitutes the 
general abode. Similarly another scriptural passage re- 
proves him who believes in the unreal world of effects, 


^ From passages of which nature we may infer that in the 
passage under discussion also the ‘abode’ is Brahman. 

^ From which circumstance we may conclude that the passage 
under discussion also refers to Brahman, 


vedanta-sOtras. 


1 56 


‘From death to death goes he who sees any difference 
here' (Ka. Up. II, 4, ii). The statement of co-ordination 
made in the clause ‘ All is Brahman ’ aims at dissolving (the 
wrong conception of the reality of) the world, and not in any 
way at intimating that Brahman is multiform in nature ^ ; for 
the uniformity (of Brahman’s nature) is expressly stated in 
other passages such as the following one, ‘ As a mass of salt 
has neither inside nor outside, but is altogether a mass of 
taste, thus indeed has that Self neither inside nor outside, 
but is altogether a mass of knowledge ’ (Bri. Up. IV, 5, 13). — 
For all these reasons the abode of heaven, earth, &c. is the 
highest Brahman. — Against the objection that on account 
of the text speaking of a ‘ bridge,’ and a bridge requiring 
a further bank, we have to understand by the abode of 
heaven and earth something different from Brahman, we 
remark that the word ‘ bridge ’ is meant to intimate only 
that that which is called a bridge supports, not that it has 
a further bank. We need not assume by any means that 
the bridge meant is like an ordinary bridge made of clay 
and wood. For as the word setu (bridge) is derived from 
the root s i, which means ‘ to bind,’ the idea of holding 
together, supporting is rather implied in it than the idea of 
being connected with something beyond (a further bank). 

According to the opinion of another (commentator) the 
word ‘ bridge ’ does not glorify the abode of heaven, earth, 
&c., but rather the knowledge of the Self which is glorified 
in the preceding clause, ‘ Know him alone as the Self,’ and 
the abandonment of speech advised in the clause, ‘ leave off 
other words ; ’ to them, as being the means of obtaining 
immortality, the expression ‘ the bridge of the immortal ’ 
applies On that account we have to set aside the assertion 
that, on account of the word ‘ bridge,’ something different 
from Brahman is to be understood by the abode of heaven, 
earth, and so on. 


^ Yat sarvam avidyaropitaw tat sarvaz^ paramdrthato brahma 
na tu yad brahma tat sarvam ity artha/^. Bhamati. 

^ So that the passage would have to be translated, ‘ That, viz. 
knowledge, &c. is the bridge of the Immortal.’ 




I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 2. 


157 


2 . And on account of its being designated as that 
to which the Released have to resort. 

By the abode of heaven, earth, and so on, we have to 
understand the highest Brahman for that reason also that 
we find it denoted as that to which the Released have to 
resort. — The conception that the body and other things 
contained in the sphere of the Not-self are our Self, 
constitutes Nescience; from it there spring desires with 
regard to whatever promotes the well-being of the body 
and so on, and aversions with regard to whatever tends to 
injure it ; there further arise fear and confusion when we 
observe anything threatening to destroy it. All this con- 
stitutes an endless series of the most manifold evils with 
which we all are acquainted. Regarding those on the other 
hand who have freed themselves from the stains of Nescience 
desire aversion and so on, it is said that they have to resort 
to that, viz. the abode of heaven, earth, &c. which forms the 
topic of discussion. For the text, after having said, ‘ The 
fetter of the heart is broken, all doubts are solved, all his 
works perish when He has been beheld who is the higher 
and the lower ' (Mu. Up. II, 2, 8), later on remarks, ‘ The wise 
man freed from name and form goes to the divine Person 
who is greater than the great’ (Mu. Up. Ill, 2, 8). That 
Brahman is that which is to be resorted to by the released, 
is known from other scriptural passages, such as ‘ When all 
desires which once entered his heart are undone then does 
the mortal become immortal, then he obtains Brahman ’ 
(Br?. Up. IV, 4, 7). Of the pradhdna and similar entities, 
on the other hand, it is not known from any source that they 
are to be resorted to by the released. Moreover, the text 
(in the passage, ‘ Know him alone as the Self and leave off 
other words ’) declares that the knowledge of the abode of 
heaven and earth, See. is connected with the leaving off of 
all speech ; a condition which, according to another scrip- 
tural passage, attaches to (the knowledge of) Brahman ; cp. 
Bn. Up. IV, 4, 21, ‘ Let a wise Brahma?za, after he has dis- 
covered him, practise wisdom. Let him not seek after many 
words, for that is mere weariness of the tongue.’ — For that 



vedanta-sOtras. 


158 


reason also the abode of heaven, earth, and so on, is the 
highest Brahman. 

3. Not (i. e. the abode of heaven, earth, &c. can- 
not be) that which is inferred, (i. e. the pradhana), on 
account of the terms not denoting it. 

While there has been shown a special reason in favour of 
Brahman (being the abode), there is no such special reason 
in favour of anything else. Hence he (the sutrakara) says 
that that which is inferred, i. e. the pradhana assumed by 
the S^hkhya-smnti, is not to be accepted as the abode of 
heaven, earth, &c. — Why? — On account of the terms not 
denoting it. For the sacred text does not contain any 
term intimating the non-intelligent pradhina, on the ground 
of which we might understand the latter to be the general 
cause or abode ; while such terms as ‘ he who perceives all 
and knows all ’ (Mu. Up. I, i, 9) intimate an intelligent being 
opposed to the pradhana in nature. — For the same reason 
the air also cannot be accepted as the abode of heaven, 
earth, and so on. 

4. (Nor) also the individual soul (pra?^abhrft). 

Although to the cognitional (individual) Self the qualities 
of Selfhood and intelligence do belong, still omniscience 
and similar qualities do not belong to it as its knowledge 
is limited by its adjuncts; thus the individual soul also 
cannot be accepted as the abode of heaven, earth, &c., 
for the same reason, i. e. on account of the terms not 
denoting, it.— Moreover, the attribute of forming the abode 
of heaven, earth, and so on, cannot properly be given to the 
individual soul because the latter is limited by certain 
adjuncts and therefore non-pervading (not omnipresent) k 
— The special enunciation (of the individual soul) is caused 
by what follows k — The individual soul is not to be 

^ Bhogyasya bhoktmeshatvat tasyayatanatvam uktam Sjahkyaha 
na /5eti, ^tvasyadrfsh/advM dyubhvddinimittatve^pi na sakshat 
tadayatanatvam aupddhikatvenavibhutvid ity artha/z. Ananda Giri. 

^ It would not have been requisite to introduce a special Sutra 



I ADIIYAYA, 3 PADA, 7 . 159 

accepted as the abode of heaven, earth, &c. for the follow- 
ing reason also. 

5. On account of the declaration of difference. 

The passage ‘Know him alone as the Self’ moreover 
implies a declaration of difference, viz. of the difference of 
the object of knowledge and the knower. Here the indi- 
vidual soul as being that which is desirous of release is the 
knower, and consequently Brahman, which is denoted by 
the word ‘ self’ and represented as the object of knowledge, 
is understood to be the abode of heaven, earth, and so on. 
— For the following reason also the individual soul cannot be 
accepted as the abode of heaven, earth, &c. 

6. On account of the subject-matter. 

The highest Self constitutes the subject-matter (of the 
entire chapter), as we see from the passage, ‘ Sir, what is 
that through which, when it is known, everything else 
becomes known ? ’ (Mu. Up. I, i, 3), in which the knowledge 
of everything is declared to be dependent on the knowledge 
of one thing. For all this (i. e. the entire world) becomes 
known if Brahman the Self of all is known, not if only the 
individual soul is known. — Another reason against the 
individual soul follows. 

7. And on account of the two conditions of stand- 
ing and eating (of which the former is characteristic 
of the highest Lord, the latter of the individual soul). 

With reference to that which is the abode of heaven, 
earth, and so on, the text says, ‘ Two birds, inseparable 
friends,’ &c. (Mu. Up. Ill, i, i). This passage describes 
the two states of mere standing, i. e. mere presence, and of 
eating, the clause, ‘ One of them eats the sweet fruit,’ refer- 
ring to the eating, i. e. the fruition of the results of works, 

for the individual soul — which, like the air, is already excluded by 
the preceding Sutra— if it were not for the new argument brought 
forward in the following Sdtra which applies to the individual soul 
only. 



1 60 VEDANTA-SUTRAS . 


and the clause, ‘ The other one looks on without eating,’ 
describing the condition of mere inactive presence. The 
two states described, viz. of mere presence on the one hand 
and of enjoyment on the other hand, show that the Lord 
and the individual soul are referred to. Now there is room 
for this statement which represents the Lord as separate 
from the individual soul, only if the passage about the 
abode of heaven and earth likewise refers to the Lord ; for 
in that case only there exists a continuity of topic. On 
any other supposition the second passage would contain a 
statement about something not connected with the general 
topic, and would therefore be entirely uncalled for. — But, it 
may be objected, on your interpretation also the second 
passage makes an uncalled-for statement, viz. in so far as it 
represents the individual soul as separate from the Lord. — 
Not so, we reply. It is nowhere the purpose of Scripture 
to make statements regarding the individual soul. .From 
ordinary experience the individual soul, which in the different 
individual bodies is joined to the internal organs and other 
limiting adjuncts, is known to every one as agent and 
enjoyer, and we therefore must not assume that it is 
that which Scripture aims at setting forth. The Lord, on 
the other hand, about whom ordinary experience tells 
us nothing, is to be considered as the special topic of 
all scriptural passages, and we therefore cannot assume 
that any passage should refer to him merely casually — 


^ If the individual soul were meant by the abode of heaven, 
earth, &c., the statement regarding Lvara made in the passage 
about the two birds would be altogether abrupt, and on that ground 
objectionable. The same difficulty does not present itself with 
regard to the abrupt mention of the individual soul which is well 
known to everybody, and to which therefore casual allusions may 
be made. — I subjoin Ananda Giri’s commentary on the entire pas- 
sage : Givasyopadhyaikyenavivakshitatvat tad^wane^pi sarva^wana- 
siddhes tasydyatanatvadyabhlve hetvantara?;z vS/^yam ity a^ahkya 
shtre?2a pariharati kutaj^etyadind. Tad vydX’ash/e dyubhvMiti, 
Nirde.yam eva darjayati tayor iti. Vibhaktyartham ^ha t^bhya;^z /^eti. 
Sthityejvarasy^dand^ ^ivasajvzgrahe^^pi katham ijvarasyaiva vijva- 
yatanatva»? tadaha yaditi. Lvarasylyanatvenfiprakrftatve ^tvaprz- 




I ADIIYIyA, 3 PA DA, 7. 


161 


That the mantra ‘ two birds,’ &c. speaks of the Lord and 
the individual soul we have already shown under I, 3 , ii. 
— And if, according to the interpretation given in the Paihgi- 
iipanishad (and quoted under I, 3, ii), the verse is under- 
stood to refer to the internal organ (sattva) and the 
individual soul (not to the individual soul and the Lord), 
even then there is no contradiction (between that interpre- 
tation and our present averment that the individual soul is 
not the abode of heaven and earth), — How so? — Here 
(i.e. in the present Sutra and the Sutras immediately 
preceding) it is denied that the individual soul which, owing 
to its imagined connexion with the internal organ and other 
limiting adjuncts, has a separate existence in separate 
bodies — its division being analogous to the division of 
universal space into limited spaces such as the spaces 
within jars and the like — is that which is called the abode 
of heaven and earth. That same soul, on the other hand, 
which exists in all bodies, if considered apart from the limit- 
ing adjuncts, is nothing else but the highest Self Just as 
the spaces within jars, if considered apart from their limiting 
conditions, arc merged in universal space, so the individual 
soul also is incontestably that which is denoted as the 
abode of heaven and earth, since it (the soul) cannot really 
be separate from the highest Self. That it is not the 
abode of heaven and earth, is therefore said of the indi- 
vidual soul in so far only as it imagines itself to be con- 
nected with the internal organ and so on. Hence it follows 
that the highest Self is the abode of heaven, earth, and so 
on. — The same conclusion has already been arrived at 
under I, 3, 31 ; for in the passage concerning the source 
of all beings (which passage is discussed under the Sutra 
quoted) we meet with the clause, ‘ In which heaven and 


thakkathanauupapattir ity uktani eva vyatirekadvaraha anyatheti. 
(xtvasyayatanatven^prakrftatve tulyanupapattir iti jahkale nanviti. 
Tasyaik}4rthaOT lokasiddhasy^nuv^datv^n naivam itj' dha neti. 
(!rtvasyapurvatvabh^venapratipS,dyatvam eva praka/ayati kshetra^wo 
hiti. Lvarasydpi lokavadisiddhatvad apratip^dyatety as-ahkyaha 
tjvaras tv iti. 

[34] 


M 




i62 


vedanta-sOtras. 


earth and the sky are woven.' In the present adhikara;^a 
the subject is resumed for the sake of further elucidation. 

8. The bhuman (is Brahman), as the instruction 
about it is additional to that about the state of deep 
sleep (i. e. the vital air which remains awake even in 
the state of deep sleep). 

We read {Kh. Up. VII, 33 ; 34), ‘That which is much 
(bhCiman) we must desire to understand. — Sir, I desire to 
understand it. — Where one sees nothing else, hears nothing 
else, understands nothing else, that is what is much (bhuman). 
Where one sees something else, hears something else, under- 
stands something else, that is the Little.' — Here the doubt 
arises whether that which is much is the vital air (pra/^a) or 
the highest Self. — Whence the doubt ? — The word ‘bhuman,’ 
taken by itself, means the state of being much, according to 
its derivation as taught by Pamni, VI, 4, 158. Hence 
there is felt the want of a specification showing what con- 
stitutes the Self of that muchness. Here there presents itself 
at first the approximate passage, ‘ The vital air is more than 
hope' [Kh. Up. VII, 15, i), from which we may conclude 
that the vital air is bhuman.— On the other hand, we meet 
at the beginning of the chapter, where the general topic is 
stated, with the following passage, ‘ I have heard from men 
like you that he who knows the Self overcomes grief. I am 
in grief. Do, Sir, help me over this grief of mine; ’ from which 
passage it would appear that the bhuman is the highest 
Self. — Hence there arises a doubt as to which of the two 
alternatives is to be embraced, and which is to be set aside. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the bhCiman is the vital 
air, since there is found no further series of questions and 
answers as to what is more. For while we meet with a series 
of questions and answers (such as, ‘ Sir, is there something 
which is more than a name? ’ — ‘ Speech is more than name,’ — 

‘ Is there something which is more than speech ? ’ — ‘ Mind is 
more than speech ’), which extends from name up to vital air, 
we do not meet with a similar question and answer as to what 
might be more than vital air (such as, ‘ Is there something 




I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 8. 


163 


which is more than vital air ? ’ — ‘ Such and such a thing is 
more than vital air’). The text rather at first declares at 
length (in the passage, ‘ The vital air is more than hope,’ 8lc.) 
that the vital air is more than all the members of the series 
from name up to hope ; it then acknowledges him who 
knows the vital air to be an ativadin, i.e. one who makes 
a statement surpassing the preceding statements (in the 
passage, ‘ Thou art an ativadin. He may say I am an ati- 
vadin ; he need not deny it ’) ; and it thereupon (in the 
passage, ‘But he in reality is an ativadin who declares 
something beyond by means of the True’ i), — not leaving 
off, but rather continuing to refer to the quality of an 
ativadin which is founded on the vital air, — proceeds, by 
means of the series beginning with the True, to lead over to 
the bhuman ; so that we conclude the meaning to be 
that the vital air is the bhuman. — But, if the bhuman is 
interpreted to mean the vital air, how have we to explain 
the passage in which the bhuman is characterised, ‘ Where 
one sees nothing else ? ’ &c. — As, the purvapakshin replies, 
in the state of deep sleep we observe a cessation of all 
activity, such as seeing, &c., on the part of the organs 
merged in the vital air, the vital air itself may be charac- 
terised by a passage such as, ‘ Where one sees nothing else.’ 
Similarly, another scriptural passage (Pra. Up. IV, a ; 3) de- 
scribes at first (in the words, ‘ He does not hear, he does not 
see,’ &c.) the state of deep sleep as characterised by the cessa- 
tion of the activity of all bodily organs, and then by declaring 
that in that state the vital air, with its five modifications, 
remains awake (' The fires of the pra?zas are awake in that 
town ’), shows the vital air to occupy the principal position 
in the state of deep sleep. — That passage also, which speaks 
of the bliss of the bhuman (‘ The bhuman is bliss,’ Kh. Up. 
VII, 23), can be reconciled with our explanation, because 
Pra. Up. IV, 6 declares bliss to attach to the state of deep 
sleep (‘Then that god sees no dreams and at that time 
that happiness arises in his body’). — Again, the statement, 
‘The bhuman is immortality’ [Kh. Up. VII, 24, i), may 

^ As might be the primt facie conclusion from the particle ‘ but ’ 
introducing the sentence ‘ but he in reality,’ &c. 

M 2 


164 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


likewise refer to the vital air ; for another scriptural passage 
says, ‘Pra;2a is immortality’ (Kau. Up, III, %), — But how 
can the view according to which the bhuman is the vital air 
be reconciled with the fact that in the beginning of the 
chapter the knowledge of the Self is represented as the 
general topic (‘ He who knows the Self overcomes grief,’ &c.)? 
— By the Self there referred to, the purvapakshin replies, 
nothing else is meant but the vital air. For the passage, 
‘ The vital air is father, the vital air is mother, the vital air 
is brother, the vital air is sister, the vital air is teacher, the 
vital air is Brahma;2a ’ {K/i. Up. VII, 15, i), represents 
the vital air as the Self of everything. As, moreover, the 
passage, ‘As the spokes of a wheel rest in the nave, so 
all this rests in pra/za,’ declares the pra 72 a to be the Self of 
all— by means of a comparison with the spokes and the 
nave of a wheel — the pra/za may be conceived under the form 
of bhuman, i.e. plenitude. -Bhuman, therefore, means the 
vital air. 

To this we make the following reply. — Bhuman can mean 
the highest Self only, not the vital air. — Why ? — ‘ On account 
of information being given about it, subsequent to bliss.’ 
The word ‘bliss’ (samprasada) means the state of deep sleep, 
as may be concluded, firstly, from the etymology of the 
word (‘In it he, i.e. man, is altogether pleased — samprasi- 
dati’) — and, secondly, from the fact of samprasada being 
mentioned in the Bnhaddra^zyaka together with the state 
of dream and the waking state. And as in the state of 
deep sleep the vital air remains awake, the word ‘ sampra- 
sada ’ is employed in the Sutra to denote the vital air ; so 
that the Sutra means, 'on account of information being 
given about the bhuman, subsequently to (the informa- 
tion given about) the vital air.’ If the bhuman were the 
vital air itself, it would be a strange proceeding to make 
statements about the bhuman in addition to the statements 
about the vital air. For in the preceding passages also we 
do not meet, for instance, with a sta.tement about name 
subsequent to the previous statement about name (i. e. the 
text does not say ‘name is more than name’), but after 
something has been said about name, a new statement is 



I ADIIyAyA, 3 PADA, 8. 165 


made about speech, which is something different from name 
(i.e. the text says, ‘Speech is more than name ’), and so on 
up to the statement about vital air, each subsequent state- 
ment referring to something other than the topic of the 
preceding one. We therefore conclude that the bhuman 
also, the statement about which follows on the statement 
about the vital air, is something other than the vital air.— 
But — it may be objected — we meet here neither with a ques- 
tion, such as, ‘ Is there something more than vital air? ’ nor 
with an answer, such as, ‘ That and that is more than vital 
air.’ How, then, can it be said that the information about the 
bhuman is given subsequently to the information about the 
vital air ? — Moreover, we see that the circumstance of being 
an ativ^din, which is exclusively connected with the vital 
air, is referred to in the subsequent passage (viz. ‘ But in 
reality he is an ativddin who makes a statement surpassing 
(the preceding statements) by means of the True’). There 
is thus no information additional to the information about 
the vital air. — To this objection we reply that it is impos- 
sible to maintain that the passage last quoted merely con- 
tinues the discussion of the quality of being an ati vadin, as con- 
nected with the knowledge of the vital air ; since the clause, 
‘ He who makes a statement surpassing, &c. by means of 
the True,’ states a specification. — But, the objector resumes, 
this very statement of a specification may be explained as 
referring to the vital air. If you ask how, we refer you to 
an analogous case. If somebody says, ‘ This Agnihotrin 
speaks the truth,’ the meaning is not that the quality of 
being an Agnihotrin depends on speaking the truth ; that 
quality rather depends on the (regular performance of the) 
agnihotra only, and speaking the truth is mentioned merely 
as a special attribute of that special Agnihotrin. So 
our passage also (‘ But in reality he is an ativ^din who 
makes a statement, &c. by means of the True’) does not 
intimate that the quality of being an ativddin depends on 
speaking the truth, but merely expresses that speaking 
the truth is a special attribute of him who knows the vital 
air; while the quality of being an ativadin must be con- 
sidered to depend on the knowledge of the vital air. — This 



i66 


vedanta-sOtras. 


objection we rebut by the remark that it involves an aban- 
donment of the direct meaning of the sacred text. For 
from the text, as it stands, we understand that the quality 
of being an ativddin depends on speaking the truth ; the sense 
being : An ativ^din is he who is an ativadin by means of the 
True. The passage does not in anyway contain a eulogisation 
of the knowledge of the vital air. It could be connected 
with the latter only on the ground of general subject-matter 
(prakara;^a) ^ ; which would involve an abandonment of the di- 
rect meaning of the text in favour of prakara;za — Moreover, 
the particle but (‘ But in reality he is,’ &c,), whose purport 
is to separate (what follows) from the subject-matter of what 
precedes, would not agree (with the pra;^a explanation). 
The following passage also, ‘ But we must desire to know 
the True’ (VII, i6), which presupposes a new effort, shows 
that a new topic is going to be entered upon. — For these 
reasons we have to consider the statement about the ati- 
vddin in the same light as we should consider the remark — 
made in a conversation which previously had turned on the 
praise of those who study one Veda — that he who studies 
the four Vedas is a great Brahma7«a ; a remark which we 
should understand to be laudatory of persons different from 
those who study one Veda, i. e. of those who study all the 
four Vedas. Nor is there any reason to assume that a new 
topic can be introduced in the form of question and answer 
only ; for that the matter propounded forms a new topic is 
sufficiently clear from the circumstance that no connexion 
can be established between it and the preceding topic. 
The succession of topics in the chapter under discussion 
is as follows : Ndrada at first listens to the instruction 
which SanatkumS,ra gives him about various matters, the 
last of which is Pra77a, and then becomes silent. Thereupon 
Sanatkumara explains to him spontaneously (without being 


^ It being maintained that the passage referred to is to be viewed 
in connexion with the general subject-matter of the preceding part 
of the chapter. 

2 And would thus involve a violation of a fundamental principle 
of the Mtm^77zsd. 


I ADHYAyA, 3 PADA, 8. 167 


asked) that the quality of being an ativAdin, if merely based 
on the knowledge of the vital air — which knowledge has 
for its object an unreal product, — is devoid of substance, and 
that he only is an ativddin who is such by means of 
the True, By the term ‘the True’ there is ’meant the 
highest Brahman ; for Brahman is the Real, and it is 
called the ‘True’ in another scriptural passage also, viz. 
Taitt. Up. II, I, ‘The True, knowledge, infinite is Brahman.’ 
Narada, thus enlightened, starts a new line of enquiry 
(‘Might I, Sir, become an ativadin by the True?’) and 
Sanatkumdra then leads him, by a series of instrumental 
steps, beginning with understanding, up to the knowledge 
of bhuman. We therefrom conclude that the bhuman is 
that very True whose explanation had been promised in 
addition to the (knowledge of the) vital air. We thus see 
that the instruction about the bhuman is additional to the 
instruction about the vital air, and bhfiman must therefore 
mean the highest Self, which is different from the vital air. 
With this interpretation the initial statement, according to 
which the enquiry into the Self forms the general subject- 
matter, agrees perfectly well. The assumption, on the 
other hand (made by the purvapakshin), that by the Self 
we have here to understand the vital air is indefensible. 
For, in the first place, Self-hood does not belong to the 
vital air in any non-figurative sense. In the second place, 
cessation of grief cannot take place apart from the knowledge 
of the highest Self; for, as another scriptural passage 
declares, ‘There is no other path to go’ (S' vet. Up. VI, 15). 
Moreover, after we have read at the outset, ‘ Do, Sir, lead 
me over to the other side of grief’ {KIi, Up. VII, i, 3), we 
meet with the following concluding words (VII, a6, 3), ‘To 
him, after his faults had been rubbed out, the venerable 
Sanatkumara showed the other side of darkness.’ The 
term ‘ darkness ’...here denotes Nescience, the cause of grief, 
and so on. — Moreover, if the instruction terminated with the 
vital air, it would not be said of the latter that it rests on 
something else. But the brahma;2a {Kh. Up. VII, 36, i) 
does say, ‘The vital air springs from the Self.’ Nor can it 
be objected against this last argument that the concluding 



i68 


vedanta-sOtras. 


part of the chapter may refer to the highest Self, while, all 
the same, the bhuman (mentioned in an earlier part of the 
chapter) may be the vital air. For, from the passage (VII, 
24, i), (‘ Sir, in what does the bhuman rest ? In its own 
greatness,’ &c.), it appears that the bhuman forms the con- 
tinuous topic up to the end of the chapter. — The quality of 
being the bhuman — which quality is plenitude — agrees, 
moreover, best with the highest Self, which is the cause of 
everything. 

9. And on account of the agreement of the 
attributes (mentioned in the text). 

The attributes, moreover, which the sacred text ascribes 
to the bhhman agree well with the highest Self. The 
passage, ‘ Where one sees nothing else, heai's nothing else, 
understands nothing else, that is the bhuman,’ gives us to 
understand that in the bhhman the ordinary activities of 
seeing and so on are absent ; and that this is characteristic 
of the highest Self, we know from another scriptural passage, 
viz. ‘ But when the Self only is all this, how should he see 
another? ’ &c. (Bri. Up. IV, 5, 15). What is said about the 
absence of the activities of seeing and so on in the state of 
deep sleep (Pra. Up. IV, 2) is said with the intention of 
declaring the non-attachedness of the Self, not of describing 
the nature of the pra/^a ; for the highest Self (not the vital 
air) is the topic of that passage. The bliss also of which 
Scripture speaks as connected with that state is mentioned 
only in order to show that bliss constitutes the nature of 
the Self For Scripture says (Bn. Up. IV, 3, 32), ' This is 
his highest bliss. All other creatures live on a small por- 
tion of that bliss.’ — The passage under discussion also 
(‘ The bhuman is bliss. There is no bliss in that which is 
little (limited). The bhuman only is bliss ’) by denying 
the reality of bliss on the part of whatever is perishable 
shows that Brahman only is bliss as bhiiman, i. e. in its 
plenitude. — Again, the passage, ‘The bhuman is immor- 
tality,’ shows that the highest cause is meant; for the 
immortality of all effected things is a merely relative one. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, lO. 


169 


and another scriptural passage says that ‘whatever is 
different from that (Brahman) is perishable’ (Brf. Up. 
Ill, 4, 3j. — Similarly, the qualities of being the True, and of 
resting in its own greatness, and of being omnipresent, and 
of being the Self of everything which the text mentions (as 
belonging to the bhuman) can belong to the highest Self 
only, not to anything else. — By all this it is proved that 
the bhuman is the highest Self. 

10. The Imperishable {is Brahman) on account of 
(its) supporting (all things) up to ether. 

We read (Br?. Up. Ill, 8, 7 ; 8), ‘ In what then is the ether 
woven, like warp and woof? — He said : O G^rgi, the 
Brahma;^as call this the akshara (the Imperishable). It is 
neither coarse nor fine,’ and .so on. — Here the doubt arises 
whether the word ‘ akshara ’ means ‘ syllable ’ or ‘ the highest 
Lord.’ 

The purvapakshin maintains that the word ‘ akshara ’ 
means ‘syllable’ merely, because it has, in such terms as 
akshara-samamndya, the meaning of ‘ syllable ; ’ because 
we have no right to disregard the settled meaning of a word ; 
and because another scriptural passage also (‘ The syllable 
Om is all this,’ Kh. Up. II, 33, 4) declares a syllable, repre- 
sented as the object of devotion, to be the Self of all. 

To this we reply that the highest Self only is denoted by 
the word -akshara.’ — Why? — Because it (the akshara) is 
said to support the entire aggregate of effects, from earth 
up to ether. For the sacred text declares at first that the 
entire aggregate of effects beginning with earth and differ- 
entiated by threefold time is based on ether, in which it is 
‘woven like warp and woof;’ leads then (by means of the 
question, ‘ In what then is the ether woven, like warp and 
woof? ’) over to the akshara, and, finally, concludes with the 
words, ‘ In that akshara then, O Gargi, the ether is woven, 
like warp and woof.’ — Now the attribute of supporting 
everything up to ether cannot be ascribed to any being 
but Brahman. The text (quoted from the Kh. Up.) says 
indeed that the syllable Om is all this, but that statement 



170 


vedanta-sOtras. 


is to be understood as a mere glorification of the syllable 
Om considered as a means to obtain Brahman. — Therefore 
we take akshara to mean either ‘ the Imperishable ’ or ' that 
which pervades ; ’ on the ground of either of which explana- 
tions it must be identified with the holiest Brahman. 

But — our opponent resumes — while we must admit that 
the above reasoning holds good so far that the circum- 
stance of the akshara supporting all things up to ether is to 
be accepted as a proof of all effects depending on a cause, 
we point out that it may be employed by those also who 
declare the pradhana to be the general cause. How then 
does the previous argumentation specially establish Brah- 
man (to the exclusion of the pradhina) ? — The reply to this 
is given in the next Shtra. 

11. This (supporting can), on account of the 
command (attributed to the Imperishable, be the 
work of the highest Lord only). 

The supporting of all things up to ether is the work of the 
highest Lord only. — Why ? — On account of the command. — 
For the sacred text speaks of a command (‘ By the command 
of that akshara, 0 Gcirgi,sun and moon stand apart!’ 111,8,9), 
and command can be the work of the highest Lord only, not 
of the non-intelligent pradhana. For non-intelligent causes 
such as clay and the like are not capable of command, with 
reference to their effects, such as jars and the like. 

12. And on account of (Scripture) separating (the 
akshara) from that whose nature is different (from 
Brahman). 

Also on account of the reason stated in this Sutra 
Brahman only is to be considered as the Imperishable, and 
the supporting of all things up to ether is to be looked 
upon as the work of Brahman only, not of anything else. 
The meaning of the Sutra is as follows. Whatever things 
other than Brahman might possibly be thought to be 
denoted by the term ‘ akshara,’ from the nature of all those 
things' Scripture separates the akshara sppken of as the 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 1 3. I71 


support of all things up to ether. The scriptural passage 
alluded to is III, 8, ii, ‘ That akshara, O Gargi, is unseen 
but seeing, unheard but hearing, unperceived but perceiving, 
unknown but knowing.’ Here the designation of being 
unseen, &c. agrees indeed with the pradh^na also, but not 
so the designation of seeing, &c., as the pradhana is non- 
intelligent. — Nor can the word akshara denote the embodied 
soul with its limiting conditions, for the passage following 
on the one quoted declares that there is nothing different 
from the Self (‘ there is nothing that- sees but it, nothing 
that hears but it, nothing that perceives but it, nothing that 
knows but it ’) ; and, moreover, limiting conditions are 
expressly denied (of the akshara) in the passage, ‘ It is 
without eyes, without ears, without speech, without mind,’ 
&c. (Ill, 8, 8). An embodied soul without limiting con- 
ditions docs not exist — It is therefore certain beyond 
doubt that the Imperishable is nothing else but the highest 
Brahman. 

13. On account of his being designated as the 
object of sight (the highest Self is meant, and) the 
same (is meant in the passage speaking of the medi- 
tation on the highest person by means of the syllable 
Om). 

(In Pra. Up. V, o) the general topic of discussion is set 
forth in the words, ‘ O Satyakania, the syllable Om is the 
highest and also the other Brahman; therefore he who 
knows it arrives by the same means at one of the two.’ 
The text then goes on, ‘ Again, he who meditates with this 
syllable Om of three matras on the highest Person,’ &c. — 
Here the doubt presents itself, whether the object of medi- 
tation referred to in the latter passage is the highest Brahman 
or the othei Biahman ; a doubt based on the former pas- 
sage, according to which both are under discussion. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the other, i. e. the lower 

^ A remark directed against the possible attempt to explain the 
passage last quoted as- referring to the embodied soul. 



VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


I 72 


Brahman, is referred to, because the text promises only a 
reward limited by a certain locality for him who knows it. 
For, as the highest Brahman is omnipresent, it would be 
inappropriate to assume that he who knows it obtains a 
fruit limited by a certain locality. The objection that, if 
the lower Brahman were understood, there would be no 
room for the qualification, ‘ the highest person,’ is not valid, 
because the vital principal (prana) may be called ' higher ’ 
with reference to the body’-. 

To this we make the following reply : What is here taught 
as the object of meditation is the highest Brahman only. 
— Why ? — On account of its being spoken of as the object of 
sight. For the person to be meditated upon is, in a com- 
plementary passage, spoken of as the object of the act 
of seeing, ‘He sees the person dwelling in the castle (of 
the body ; purusham purijrayam), higher than that one who 
is of the shape of the individual soul, and who is himself 
higher (than the senses and their objects).’ Now, of an act 
of meditation an unreal thing also can be the object, as, for 
instance, the merely imaginary object of a wish. But of the 
act of seeing, real things only are the objects, as we know 
from experience ; we therefore conclude, that in the passage 
last quoted, the highest (only real) Self which corresponds 
to the mental act of complete intuition ^ is spoken of as the 
object of sight. This same highest Self we recognise in the 
passage under discussion as the object of meditation, in conse- 
quence of the term, ‘ the highest person.’ — But — an objection 
will be raised — as the object of. meditation we have the 
highest person, and as the object of sight the person higher 
than that one who is himself higher, &c. ; how, then, are we to 
know that those two are identical ? — The two passages, we 


’ Pi7z^a/; sthulo deha>^, pxanah siatralmS. Ananda Giri.~The 
lower Brahman (hira77yagarbha on shtratman) is the vital principle 
(pra7za) in all creatures. 

^ Sawyagdarrana, i. e. complete seeing or intuition j the same 
term which in other places — where it is not requisite to insist on 
the idea of ‘seeing’ in contradistinction from ‘reflecting’ or ‘ medi- 
tating’— is rendered by perfect knowledge. 



I ADIIYAYA, 3 PADA, I 3 . 


173 


reply, have in common the terms ‘highest’ (or ‘higher,’ 
para) and ‘person.’ And it must not by any means be 
supposed that the term ^ivaghana ^ refers to that highest 
person which, considered as the object of meditation, had 
previously been introduced as the general topic. For the 
consequence of that supposition would be that that highest 
person which is the object of sight would be different from 
that highest person which is represented as the object of 
meditation. We rather have to explain the word^ivaghana 
as ‘ He whose shape ^ is characterised by the ^ivas;’ so that 
what is really meant by that term is that limited condition 
of the highest Self which is owing to its adjuncts, and 
manifests itself in the form of ^ivas, i. e. individual souls ; a 
condition analogous to the limitation of salt (in general) by 
means of the mass of a particular lump of salt. That limited 
condition of the Self may itself be called ‘ higher,’ if viewed 
with regard to the senses and their objects. 

Another (commentator) says that we have to understand 
by the word ‘^ivaghana ’ the world of Brahman spoken of 
in the preceding sentence (‘ by the Saman verses he is led 
up to the world of Brahman ’), and again in the following 
sentence (v. 7), which may be called ‘ higher,’ because it is 
higher than the other worlds. That world of Brahman may 
be called ^ivaghana because all individual souls (^iva) with 
their organs of action may be viewed as comprised (sahghata 
= ghana) within Hirawyagarbha, who is the Self of all organs, 
and dwells in the Brahma-world. We thus understand that 
he who is higher than that ^ivaghana, i. e. the highest Self, 
which constitutes the object of sight, also constitutes the 
object of meditation. The qualification, moreover, ex- 
pressed in the term ‘ the highest person ’ is in its place 
only if we understand the highest Self to be meant. For 
the name, ‘ the highest person,’ can be given only to the 
highest Self, higher than which there is nothing. So another 
scriptural passage also says, ‘ Higher than the person there 
is nothing — this is the goal, the highest road.’ Hence the 


^ Translated above by ‘of the shape of the individual soul.’ 
® Pa?dni III, 3, 77, ‘mQrtta7;z ghana/z.’ 


174 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


sacred text, which at first distinguishes between thehigher and 
the lower Brahman (‘the syllable Om is the higher and the 
lower Brahman’), and afterwards speaks of the highest Person 
to be meditated upon by means of the syllable Om, gives 
us to understand that the highest Person is nothing else but 
the highest Brahman. That the highest Self constitutes the 
object of meditation, is moreover intimated by the passage 
declaring that release from evil is the fruit (of medita- 
tion), ‘ As a snake is freed from its skin, so is he freed from 
evil’ — With reference to the objection that a fruit confined 
to a certain place is not an appropriate reward for him who 
meditates on the highest Self, we finally remark that the 
objection is removed, if we understand the passage to refer 
to emancipation by degrees. Pie who meditates on the 
highest Self by means of the syllable Om, as consisting of 
three matris, obtains for his (first) reward the world of 
Brahman, and after that, gradually, complete intuition. 

14. The small (ether) (is Brahman) on account of 
the subsequent (arguments). 

We read {Kh. Up. VIII, i, i), ‘ There is this city of Brah- 
man, and in it the palace, the small lotus, and in it that 
small ether. Now what exists within that small ether that 
is to be sought for, that is to be understood,’ &c. — Here the 
doubt arises whether the small ether within the small lotus 
of the heart of which Scripture speaks, is the elemental 
ether, or the individual soul (vi^wdnatman), or the highest 
Self. This doubt is caused by the words ‘ ether ’ and ‘ city 
of Brahman.’ For the word ‘ ether,’ in the first place, is 
known to be used in the sense of elemental ether as well 
as of highest Brahman, Hence the doubt whether the 
small ether of the text be the elemental ether or the highest 
ether, i. e. Brahman. In explanation of the expression ‘ city 
of Brahman,’ in the second place, it might be said either 
that the individual soul is here called Brahman and the 
body Brahman’s city, or else that the city of Brahman 
means the city of the highest Brahman. Here (i. e. in con- 
sequence of this latter doubt) a further doubt arises as to 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 1 4 . 


175 


the nature of the small ether, according as the individual 
soul or the highest Self is understood by the Lord of the 
city. 

The phrvapakshin maintains that by the small ether we 
have to understand the elemental ether, since the latter 
meaning is the conventional one of the word aka^a. The 
elemental ether is here called small with reference to its 
small abode (the heart). — In the passage, ‘ As large as this 
ether is, so large is that ether within the heart,’ it is repre- 
sented as constituting at the same time the two terms of a 
comparison, because it is possible to make a distinction 
between the outer and the inner ether ^ ; and it is said that 
‘ heaven and earth are contained within it,’ because the whole 
ether, in so far as it is space, is one K — Or else, the purva- 
pakshin continues, the ‘ small one ’ may be taken to mean 
the individual soul, on account of the term, ‘ the city of 
Brahman.’ The body is here called the city of Brahman 
because it is the abode of the individual soul ; for it is 
acquired by means of the actions of the soul. On this 
interpretation we must assume that the individual soul is 
here called Brahman metaphorically. The highest Brahman 
cannot be meant, because it is not connected with the body 
as its lord. The lord of the city, i. e. the soul, is represented 
as dwelling in one spot of the city (viz. the heart), just as a 
real king resides in one spot of his residence. Moreover, the 
mind (manas) constitutes the limiting adjunct of the indi- 
vidual soul, and the mind chiefly abides in the heart ; 
hence the individual soul only can be -spoken of as dwelling 
in the heart. Further, the individual soul only can be 
spoken of as small, since it is (elsewhere ; .Svet. Up. V, 8) 
compared in size to the point of a goad. That it is com- 
pared (in the passage under discussion) to the ether must be 
understood to intimate its non difference from Brahman. — 


^ So that the interpretation of the pflrvapakshin cannot be 
objected to on the ground of its involving the comparison of a 
thing to itself. 

® So that no objection can be raised on the ground that heaven 
and earth cannot be contained in the small ether of the heart. 



vedAnta-s^tras. 


1 76 


Nor does the scriptural passage say that the ‘small ’ one is 
to be sought for and to be understood, since in the clause, 
‘ That which is within that,’ &c., it is represented as a mere 
distinguishing attribute of something else 

To all this we make the following reply : — The small ether 
can mean the highest Lord only, not either the elemental 
ether or the individual soul. — Why? — On account of the 
subsequent reasons, i. e. on account of the reasons implied 
in the complementary passage. For there, the text declares 
at first, with reference to the small ether, which is enjoined 
as the object of sight, ‘ If they should say to him,’ &c. ; 
thereupon follows an objection, ‘ What is there that deserves 
to be sought for or that is to be understood ? ’ and thereon 
a final decisive statement, ‘ Then he should say : As large 
as this ether is, so large is that ether within the heart. 
Both heaven and earth are contained within it’ Here the 
teacher, availing himself of the comparison of the ether 
within the heart with the known (universal) ether, precludes 
the conception that the ether within the heart is small — 
which conception is based on the statement as to the smallness 
of the lotus, i. e. the heart — and thereby precludes the pos- 
sibility of our understanding by the term ‘ the small ether,’ 
the elemental ether. For, although the ordinary use of 
language gives to the word ‘ ether ’ the sense of elemental 
ether, here the elemental ether cannot be thought of, because 
it cannot possibly be compared with itself. — But, has it not 
been stated above, that the ether, although one only, may 
be compared with itself, in consequence of an assumed dif- 
ference between the outer and the inner ether? — That 
explanation, we reply, is impossible ; for we cannot admit 
that a comparison of a thing with itself may be based upon 
a merely imaginary difference. And even if we admitted 

^ Viz. of that which is within it. Ananda Giri proposes two 
explanations: na k&i\, paravhesha?2alvenely atra paro daharakSxa 
upadSnat tasminn iti sapiamyanta-taM/zabdasyeti jesha/^. Yadv^ 
para^abdo x nta/zsthavastuvishayas tadvijeshazzatvena tasminn iti 
daharakajasyokter ity artha/z. Ta/^/^i/^abdasya samnikz'z'sh/anvaya- 
yoge vipraknshz'anvayasya ^aghanyatvad akdjintargatazzz dhyeyam 
iti bhava^. 


I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 1 4 . 


177 


the possibility of such a comparison, the extent of the outer 
ether could never be ascribed to the limited inner ether. 
Should it be said that to the highest Lord also the extent of 
the (outer) ether cannot be ascribed, since another scriptural 
passage declares that he is greater than ether (Sa. Bra. X, 
6, 3, 2), we invalidate this objection by the remark, that the 
passage (comparing the inner ether with the outer ether) has 
the purport of discarding the idea of smallness (of the inner 
ether), which is primi facie established by the smallness of 
the lotus of the heart in which it is contained, and has not 
the purport of establishing a certain extent (of the inner 
ether). If the passage aimed at both, a split of the sen- 
tence^ would result. — Nor, if we allowed the assumptive 
difference of the inner and the outer ether, would it be 
possible to represent that limited portion of the ether which 
is enclosed in the lotus of the heart, as containing within 
itself heaven, earth, and so on. Nor can we reconcile with 
the nature of the elemental ether the qualities of Self-hood, 
freeness from sin, and so on, (which are ascribed to the 
‘small’ ether) in the following passage, ‘ It is the Self free 
from sin, free from old age, from death and grief, from 
hunger and thirst, of true desires, of true purposes.’ — Al- 
though the term ‘ Self ’ (occurring in the passage quoted) 
may apply to the individual soul, yet other reasons exclude 
all idea of the individual soul being meant (by the small 
ether). For it would be impossible to dissociate from the 
individual soul, which is restricted by limiting conditions 
and elsewhere compared to the point of a goad, the attri- 
bute of smallness attaching to it, on account of its being 
enclosed in the lotus of the heart. — Let it then be assumed — 
our opponent remarks — that the qualities of all-pervading- 
ness, &c. are ascribed to the individual soul with the intention 
of intimating its non-difference from Brahman. — Well, we 
reply, if you suppose that the small ether is called all- 
pervading because it is one with Brahman, our own suppo- 


^ A vdkyabheda — split of the sentence — takes place according 
to the when one and the same sentence contains two 

new statements which are different. 

[34] N 


178 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


sition, viz. that the all-pervadingness spoken of is directly 
predicated of Brahman itself, is the much more simple one. — 
Concerning the assertion that the term ‘ city of Brahman ’ 
can only be understood, on the assumption that the indi- 
vidual soul dwells, like a king, in one particular spot of the 
city of which it is the Lord, we remark that the term is 
more properly interpreted to mean ‘ the body in so far as 
it is the city of the highest Brahman ; ’ which interpretation 
enables us to take the term ‘ Brahman ’ in its primary sense 
The highest Brahman also is connected with the body, for 
the latter constitutes an abode for the perception of Brah- 
man Other scriptural passages also express the same 
meaning, so, for instance, Pfa. Up. V, 5, ‘ He sees the highest 
person dwelling in the city’ (purusha=purBaya), &c., and 
Bn. Up. II, 5, 18, ‘This person (purusha) is in all cities 
(bodies) the dweller withm the city (purii'aya).’ — Or else 
(taking brahmapura to mean ^vapura) we may understand 
the passage to teach that Brahman is, in the city of the 
individual soul, near (to the devout worshipper), just as 
Vish;«u is near to us in the 6 ‘ 41 agrama-stone. — Moreover, 
the text (VIII, J, 6) at first declares the result of works 
to be perishable (‘as here on earth whatever has been 
acquired by works perishes, so perishes whatever is acquired 
for the next world by good actions,’ &c.), and afterwards 
declares the imperishableness of the results flowing from a 
knowledge of the small ether, which forms the general sub- 
ject of discussion (‘those who depart from hence after 
having discovered the Self and those true desires, for them 
there is freedom in all worlds’). From this again it is 
manifest that the small ether is the highest Self. — We now 
turn to the statement made by the purvapakshin, ‘ that the 
sacred text does not represent the small ether as that 


^ While the explanation of Brahman by ^iva would compel us 
to assume that the word Brahman secondarily denotes the individual 
soul. 

® Upalabdher adhish/^^^nam brahmawa deha ishyate I 
Tendsi,dhara«atvena deho brahmapuram bhavet li 

Bhimati. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 pAdA, 1 5 . 


179 


which is to be sought for and to be understood, because 
it is mentioned as a distinguishing attribute of something 
else,’ and reply as follows : If the (small) ether were not 
that which is to be sought for and to be understood, the 
description of the nature of that ether, which is given in 
the passage (‘ as large as this ether is, so large is that ether 
within the heart ’), would be devoid of purport, — But — the 
opponent might say — that descriptive statement also has the 
purport of setting forth the nature of the thing abiding 
within (the ether) ; for the text after having raised an objec- 
tion (in the passage, ‘ And if they should say to him : Now 
with regard to that city of Brahman and the palace in it, i.e. 
the small lotus of the heart, and the small ether within the 
heart, what is there within it that deserves to be sought for 
or that is to be understood ? ’) declares, when replying to that 
objection, that heaven, earth, and so on, are contained within 
it (the ether), a declaration to which the comparison with 
the ether forms a mere introduction. — Your reasoning, we 
reply, is faulty. If it were admitted, it would follow that 
heaven, earth, &c., which are contained within the small 
ether, constitute the objects of search and enquiry. But 
in that case the complementary passage would be out 
of place. For the text carrying on, as the subject of dis- 
cussion, the ether that is the abode of heaven, earth, &c. — 
by means of the clauses, ‘ In it all desires are contained,’ 
‘It is the Self free from sin,’ See., and the passage, ‘But 
those who depart from hence having discovered the Self, 
and the true desires ’ (in which passage the conjunction ‘ and ’ 
has the purpose of joining the desires to the Self) — declares 
that the Self as well, which is the abode of the desires, as 
the desires which abide in the Self, are the objects of know- 
ledge. From this we conclude that in the beginning of the 
passage also, the small ether abiding within the lotus of 
the heart, together with whatever is contained within it as 
earth, true desires, and so on, is represented as the object of 
knowledge. And, for the reasons explained, that ether is 
the highest Lord. 

15* (The . small ether is Brahman) on account of 

N 2 



VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


I So 


the action of going (into Brahman) and of the word 
(brahmaloka) ; for thus it is seen (i. e. that the indi- 
vidual souls go into Brahman is seen elsewhere in 
Scripture) ; and (this going of the souls into Brahman 
constitutes) an inferential sign (by means of which 
we may properly interpret the word ‘brahmaloka’). 

It has been declared (in the preceding Sutra) that the 
small (ether) is the highest Lord, on account of the reasons 
contained in the subsequent passages. These subsequent 
reasons are now set forth. — For this reason also the small 
(ether) can be the highest Lord only, because the passage 
complementary to the passage concerning the small (ether) 
contains a mention of going and a word, both of which 
intimate the highest Lord. In the first place, we read {Kh. 
Up. VIII, 3 , a), ‘All these creatures, day after day going 
into that Brahma-world, do not discover it.’ This passage 
which refers back, by means of the word ‘ Brahma- world,’ 
to the small ether which forms the general subject-matter, 
speaks of the going to it of the creatures, i. e. the individual 
souls, wherefrom we conclude that the small (ether) is 
Brahman. For this going of the individual souls into 
Brahman, which takes place day after day in the state of 
deep sleep, is seen, i. e. is met with in another scriptural 
passage, viz. Kh. Up, VI, 8, i, ‘ He becomes united with the 
True,’ &:c. In ordinary life also we say of a man who lies 
in deep sleep, ‘he has become Brahman,’ ‘he is gone into 
the state of Brahman.’ — In the second place, the word 
‘ Brahma-world,’ which is here applied to the small (ether) 
under discussion, excludes all thought of the individual 
soul or the elemental ether, and thus gives us to understand 
that the small (ether) is Brahman. — But could not the word 
‘ Brahma-world ’ convey as well the idea of the world of him 
whose throne is the lotus ^ ? — It might do so indeed, if we 
explained the compound ‘ Brahma-world ’ as ‘ the world of 
Brahman.’ But if we explain it on the ground of the co- 
ordination df both members of the compound — so that 


^ I. e. Brahm^, the lower Brahman. 



I adhyAya, 3 pAda, 1 6. 


i8 1 


‘ Brahma-world ’ denotes that world which is Brahman — 
then it conveys the idea of the highest Brahman only. — 
And that daily going (of the souls) into Brahman (mentioned 
above) is, moreover, an inferential sign for explaining the 
compound ‘ Brahma-world,’ on the ground of the co-ordina- 
tion of its two constituent members. For it would be 
impossible to assume that all those creatures daily go into 
the world of the effected (lower) Brahman ; which world is 
commonly called the Satyaloka, i. e. the world of the True. 

1 6. And on account of the supporting also {attri- 
buted to it), (the small ether must be the Lord) 
because that greatness is observed in him (accord- 
ing to other scriptural passages). 

And also on account of the ‘ supporting ’ the small ether 
can be the highest Lord only. — How ? — The text at first 
introduces the general subject of discussion in the passage, 
‘ In it is that small ether ; ’ declares thereupon that the small 
one is to be compared with the universal ether, and that 
everything is contained in it; subsequently applies to it 
the term ‘ Self,’ and states it to possess the qualities of 
being free from sin, &c. ; and, finally, declares with reference 
to the same general subject of discussion, ‘ That Self is a 
bank, a limitary support (vidhWti), that these worlds may 
not be confounded.’ As ' support ’ is here predicated of 
the Self, we have to understand by it a supporting agent. 
Just as a dam stems the spreading water so that the 
boundaries of the fields are not confounded, so that Self 
acts like a limitary dam in order that these outer and 
inner worlds, and all the different castes and djramas may 
not be confounded. In accordance with this our text 
declares that greatness, which is shown in the act of holding 
asunder, to belong to the small (ether) which forms the subject 
of discussion ; and that such greatness is found in the highest 
Lord only, is seen from other scriptural passages, such as ‘ By 
the command of that Imperishable, O G^rgi, sun and moon 
are held apart ’ (Bn. Up. Ill, 8, 9). Similarly, we read in 
another passage also, about whose referring to the highest 


i 82 


VEDANTA^SfjTRAS. 


Lord there is no doubt, ‘ He is the Lord of all, the king of 
all things, the protector of all things. He is a bank and a 
limitary support, so that these worlds may not be con- 
founded’ (Brz. Up. IV, 4, 22). — Hence, on account of the 
‘ supporting,’ also the small (ether) is nothing else but the 
highest Lord. 

1 7. And on account of the settled meaning. 

The small ether within cannot denote anything but the 
highest Lord for this reason also, that the word 'ether’ 
has (among other meanings) the settled meaning of ‘highest 
Lord.’ Compare, for instance, the sense in which the word 
‘ ether’ is used in Kh. Up. VIII, 14, ‘ He who is called ether 
is the revealer of all forms and names ; ’ and Kh. Up. I, 9, 
I, ‘All these beings take their rise from the ether,’ &c. On 
the other hand, we do not meet with any passage in which 
the word ‘ ether ’ is used in the sense of ‘ individual soul.’ 
— We have already shown that the word cannot, in our 
passage, denote the elemental ether ; for, although the 
word certainly has that settled meaning, it cannot have it 
here, because the elemental ether cannot possibly be com- 
pared to itself, &c. &c. 

18. If it be said that the other one (i.e. the indi- 
vidual soul) (is meant) on account of a reference to 
it (made in a complementary passage), (we say) no, 
on account of the impossibility. 

If the small (ether) is to be explained as the highest Lord on 
account of a complementary passage, then, the purvapak.shiii 
resumes, we point out that another complementary passage 
contains a reference to the other one, i. e. to the individual 
soul : ' Now that serene being (literally : serenity, complete 
satisfaction), which after having risen out from this earthly 
body and having reached the highest light, appears in its true 
form, that is, the Self ; thus he spoke’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 3, 4). 
For there the word ‘serenity,’ which is known to denote, in 
another scriptural passage, the state of deep sleep, can 
convey the idea of the individual soul only when it is in 



I adhyA YA, 3 pAda, 19. 183 


that state, not of anything else. The ‘ rising from the body ’ 
also can be predicated of the individual soul only whose 
abode the body is ; just as air, &c., whose abode is the 
ether, are said to arise from the ether. And just as 
the word ‘ ether,’ although in ordinary language not denoting 
the highest Lord, yet is admitted to denote him in such 
passages as, ‘ The ether is the revealer of forms and names,’ 
because it there occurs in conjunction with qualities of the 
highest Lord, so it may likewise denote the individual soul. 
Hence the term ‘ the small ether ’ denotes in the passage 
under discussion the individual soul, ‘ on account of the 
reference to the other.’ 

Not so, we reply, 'on account of the impossibility.’ In 
the first place, the individual soul, which imagines itself to 
be limited by the internal organ and its other adjuncts, can- 
not be compared with the ether. And, in the second place, 
attributes such as freedom from evil, and the like, cannot be 
ascribed to a being which erroneously transfers to itself the 
attributes of its limiting adjuncts. This has already been 
set forth in the first Sutra of the present adhikarawa, and 
is again mentioned here in order to remove all doubt 
as to the soul being different from the highest Self. That 
the reference pointed out by the purvapakshin is not to the 
individual soul will, moreover, be shown in one of the next 
Sutras (I, 3, ai). 

19. If it be said that from the subsequent (chapter 
it appears that the individual soul is meant), (we 
point out that what is there referred to is) rather 
(the individual soul in so far) as its true nature has 
become manifest (i. e. as it is non-different from 
Brahman). 

The doubt whether, ‘ on account of the reference to the 
other,’ the individual soul might not possibly be meant, has 
been discarded on the ground of ‘impossibility.’ But, like 
a dead man on whom amrzt a has been sprinkled, that doubt 
rises again, drawing new strength from the subsequent 
chapter which treats of Pra^ipati. For there he (Pra^apati) 




1 84 VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


at the outset declares that the Self, which is free from sin 
and the like, is that which is to be searched out, that which 
we must try to understand {Kh. Up. VIII, 7, i) ; after that 
he points out that the seer within the eye, i.e. the individual 
soul, is the Self (‘that person that is seen in the eye is the 
Self/ VIII, 7, 3) ; refers again and again to the same entity 
(in the clauses ‘ I shall explain him further to you,’ VIII, 9, 
3 ; VIII, 10, 4) ; and (in the explanations fulfilling the given 
promises) again explains the (nature of the) same individual 
soul in its different states (‘ He who moves about happy 
in dreams is the Self,’ VIII, 10, i ; ‘When a man being 
asleep, reposing, and at perfect rest sees no dreams, that is 
the Self,’ VIII, ii, i). The clause attached to both these 
explanations (viz. ‘ That is the immortal, the fearless ; 
that is Brahman ’) shows, at the same time, the individual 
soul to be free from sin, and the like. After that Pra^pati, 
having discovered a shortcoming in the condition of deep 
sleep (in consequence of the expostulation of Indra, ‘ In that 
way he does not know himself that he is I, nor does he 
know these beings,’ VIII, ii, 3), enters on a further expla- 
nation (‘ I shall explain him further to you, and nothing more 
than this’), begins by blaming the (soul’s) connexion with the 
body, and finally declares the individual soul, when it has 
risen from the body, to be the highest person. (‘ Thus does 
that serene being, arising from this body, appear in its own 
form as soon as it has approached the highest light. That 
is the highest person.’) — From this it appears that there is a 
possibility of the qualities of the highest Lord belonging to the 
individual soul also, and on that account we maintain that the 
term, ‘the small ether within it,’ refers to the individual soul. 

This position we counter-ai'gue as follows. ‘ But in so far 
as its nature has become manifest.’ The particle ‘ but ’ (in 
the Sutra) is meant to set aside the view of the pCirvapakshin, 
so that the sense of the Sutra is, ‘ Not even on account of 
the subsequent chapter a doubt as to the small ether being 
the individual soul is possible, because there also that which 
is meant to be intimated is the individual soul, in so far only 
as its (true) nature has become manifest.’ The Sutra uses 
the expression ‘he whose nature has become manifest,’ 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 1 9. 1 85 

which qualifies ^iva, the individual soul, with reference to 
its previous condition h — The meaning is as follows. 
Pra^apati speaks at first of the seer characterised by the 
eye (’' That person which is within the eye/ &c.) ; shows 
thereupon, in the passage treating of (the reflection in) the 
waterpan, that he (viz. the seer) has not his true Self in 
the body ; refers to him repeatedly as the subject to be 
explained (in the clauses ‘I shall explain him further 
to you'); and having then spoken of him as subject to 
the states of dreaming and deep sleep, finally explains 
the individual soul in its real nature, i. e. in so far as 
it is the highest Brahman, not in so far as it is indi- 
vidual soul (‘ As soon as it has approached the highest 
light it appears in its own form’). The highest light 
mentioned, in the passage last quoted, as what is to be 
approached, is nothing else but the highest Brahman, 
which is distinguished by such attributes as freeness from 
sin, and the like. That same highest Brahman constitutes 
— as we know from passages such as ‘ that art thou ’ — the 
real nature of the individual soul, while its second nature, 
i. e. that aspect of it which depends on fictitious limiting 
conditions, is not its real nature. For as long as the indi- 
vidual soul does not free itself from Nescience in the form of 
duality — which Nescience may be compared to the mistake 
of him who in the twilight mistakes a post for a man — and 
does not rise to the knowledge of the Self, whose nature is 
unchangeable, eternal Cognition — which expresses itself in 
the form ‘ I am Brahman ’ — so long it remains the individual 
soul. But when, discarding the aggregate of body, sense- 
organs and mind, it arrives, by means of Scripture, at the 
knowledge that it is not itself that aggregate, that it does 
not form part of transmigratory existence, but is the True, 
the Real, the Self, whose nature is pure intelligence ; then 

^ The masculine ‘ avirbhfitasvarupa/z ' qualifies the substantive 
^tva/z which has to be supplied. Properly speaking the ^tva whose 
true nature has become manifest, i. e. which has become Brahman, 
is no longer ^iva ; hence the explanatory statement that the term 
^tva is used with reference to what the ^tva was before it became 
Brahman. 



i86 


vedAnta-s'u tk as. 


knowing itself to be of the nature of unchangeable, eternal 
Cognition, it lifts itself above the vain conceit of being one 
with this body, and itself becomes the Self, whose nature is 
unchanging, eternal Cognition. As is declared in such 
scriptural passages as ‘ He who knows the highest Brahman 
becomes even Brahman ’ (Mu. Up, III, 3, 9). And this is 
the real nature of the individual soul by means of which it 
arises from the body and appears in its own form. 

Here an objection may be raised. How, it is asked, can we 
speak of the true nature (svarupa) of that which is unchanging 
and eternal, and then say that ^ it appears in its own form 
(true nature) ? ’ Of gold and similar substances, whose true 
nature becomes hidden, and whose specific qualities are 
rendered non-apparent by their contact with some other 
substance, it may be said that their true nature is rendered 
manifest when they are cleaned by the application of some 
acid substance ; so it may be said, likewise, that the stars, 
whose light is during daytime overpowered (by the superior 
brilliancy of the sun), become manifest in their true nature 
at night when the overpowering (sun) has departed. But it 
is impossible to speak of an analogous overpowering of the 
eternal light of intelligence by whatever agency, since, like 
ether, it is free from all contact, and since, moreover, such 
an assumption would be contradicted by what we actually 
observe. For the (energies of) seeing, hearing, noticing, 
cognising constitute the character of the individual soul, 
and that character is observed to exist in full perfection, 
even in the case of that individual soul which has not yet 
risen beyond the body. Every individual soul carries on 
the course of its practical existence by means of the activities 
of seeing, hearing, cognising; otherwise no practical existence 
at all would be possible. If, on the other hand, that character 
would realise itself in the case of that soul only which has 
risen above the body, the entire aggregate of practical exis- 
tence, as it actually presents itself prior to the soul’s rising, 
would thereby be contradicted. We therefore askp Wherein 
consists that (alleged) rising from the body? Wherein con- 
sists that appearing (of the soul) in its own form ? 

To this we make the following reply. — Before the rise of 


I ADHyAya, 3 PAD A, 19. 


187 


discriminative knowledge the nature of the individual soul, 
which is (in reality) pure light, is non-discriminated as it 
were from its limiting adjuncts consisting of body, senses, 
mind, sense-objects and feelings, and appears as consisting 
of the energies of seeing and so on. Similarly — to quote an 
analogous case from ordinary experience — the true nature 
of a pure crystal, i.e. its transparency and whiteness, is, 
before the rise of discriminative knowledge (on the part of 
the observer), non-discriminated as it were from any limiting 
adjuncts of red or blue colour ; while, as soon as through 
some means of true cognition discriminative knowledge has 
arisen, it is said to have now accomplished its true nature, 
i. e. transparency and whiteness, although in reality it had 
already done so before. Thus the discriminative knowledge, 
effected by A'ruti, on the part of the individual soul which 
previously is non-discriminated as it were from its limiting 
adjuncts, is (according to the scriptural passage under dis- 
cussion) the soul’s rising from the body, and the fruit of that 
discriminative knowledge is its accomplishment in its true 
nature, i.e. the comprehension that its nature is the pure 
Self. Thus the embodiedness and the non-embodiedness of 
the Self are due merely to discrimination and non-discrimi- 
nation, in agreement with the mantra, ‘ Bodiless within the 
bodies,’ &c. (Ka. Up. I, 2, 22), and the statement of Smrfti 
as to the non-difference between embodiedness and non- 
embodiedness ‘ Though dwelling in the body, O Kaunteya, 
it does not act and is not tainted ’ (Bha. Gi. XIII, 31). 
The individual soul is therefore called ‘ That whose true 
nature is non-manifest ’ merely on account of the absence of 
discriminative knowledge, and it is called ‘That whose 
nature has become manifest ’ on account of the presence of 
such knowledge. Manifestation and non-manifestation of 
its nature of a different kind are not possible, since its 
nature is nothing but its nature (i. e. in reality is always the 
same). Thus the difference between the individual soul and 
the highest Lord is owing to wrong knowledge only, not to 
any reality, since, like ether, the highest Self is not in real 
contact with anything. 

And wherefrom is allthis to be kriown? — From the instruc- 



r88 


VEDANTA-S^JTRAS. 


tion given by Pra^apati who, after having referred to the 
^iva (‘the person that is seen in the eye,’ &c.), continues 
‘ This is the immortal, the fearless, this is Brahman.’ If 
the well-known seer within the eye were different from 
Brahman which is characterised as the immortal and fear- 
less, it would not be co-ordinated (as it actually is) with the 
immortal, the fearless, and Brahman. The reflected Self, on 
the other hand, is not spoken of as he who is characterised 
by the eye (the seer within the eye), for that would render 
Pra^apati obnoxious to the reproach of saying deceitful 
things. — So also, in the second section, the passage, ‘ He 
who moves about happy in dreams,’ &c. does not refer to a 
being different from the seeing person within the eye spoken 
of in the first chapter, (but treats of the same topic) as 
appears from the introductory clause, ‘ I shall explain him 
further to you.’ Moreover a person who is conscious of 
having seen an elephant in a dream and of no longer seeing 
it when awake discards in the waking state the object which 
he had seen (in his sleep), but recognises himself when awake 
to be the same person who saw something in the dream. — 
Thus in the third section also Pra^apati does indeed 
declare the absence of ail particular cognition in the state 
of deep sleep, but does not contest the identity of the 
cognising Self (‘ In that way he does not know himself that 
he is I, nor all these beings ’). The following clause also, 
‘ He is gone to utter annihilation,’ is meant to intimate only 
the annihilation of all specific cognition, not the annihilation 
of the cogniser. For there is no destruction of the knowing 
of the knower as — according to another scriptural pas- 
sage (Bn. Up. IV, 3, 30) — that is imperishable. — Thus, 
again, in the fourth section the introductory phrase 
of Pra^pati is, ‘I shall explain him further to you and 
nothing different from this ; ’ he thereupon refutes the con- 
nexion (of the Self) with the body and other limiting 
conditions (‘ Maghavat, this body is mortal,’ &c.), shows the 
individual soul — which is there called ‘ the serene being ’ — 


^ To state another reason showing that the first and second 
chapters of Pra^^fipati’s instruction refer to the same subject. 




I adhyIya, 3 pAda, 19. 


189 


in the state when it has reached the nature of Brahman 
(‘ It appears in its own form ’), and thus proves the soul to 
be non-different from the highest Brahman whose charac- 
teristics are immortality and fearlessness. 

Some (teachers) however are of opinion that if the highest 
Self is meant (in the fourth section) it would be inappropriate 
to understand the words ‘ This (him) I will explain further/ 
&c., as referring to the individual soul, and therefore suppose 
that the reference is (not to the individual soul forming the 
topic of the three preceding sections, but) to the Self 
possessing the qualities of freeness from sin, &c., which Self 
is pointed out at the beginning of the entire chapter (VII, 
i). — Against this interpretation we remark that, in the first 
place, it disregards the direct enunciation of the pronoun (i. e. 
the ‘ this ’ in ' this I will explain ’) which rests on something 
approximate (i. e. refers to something mentioned not far off), 
and, in the second place, is opposed to the word ^ further ’ (or 
‘ again ’) met with in the text, since from that interpretation it 
would follow that what had been discussed in the preceding 
sections is not again discussed in the subsequent section. 
Moreover, if Pra^apati, after having made a promise in the 
clause, ‘ This I shall explain ’ (where that clause occurs for the 
first time), did previously to the fourth section explain a 
different topic in each section, we should have to conclude that 
he acted deceitfully. — Hence (our opinion about the purport 
of the whole chapter remains valid, viz. that it sets forth how) 
the unreal aspect of the individual soul as such — which is a 
mere presentation of Nescience, is stained by all the desires 
and aversions attached to agents and enjoyers, and is con- 
nected with evils of various kinds — is dissolved by true 
knowledge, and how the soul is thus led over into the 
opposite state, i. e. into its true state in which it is one with 
the highest Lord and distinguished by freedom from sin and 
similar attributes. The whole process is similar to that by 
which an imagined snake passes over into a rope as soon as 
the mind of the beholder has freed itself from its erroneous 
imagination. 

Others again, and among them some of ours (asmadiydi' 
keMt), are of opinion that the individual soul as such 


190 


VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


is real. To the end of refuting all these speculators who 
obstruct the way to the complete intuition of the unity 
of the Self this i-afiraka-jastra has been set forth, whose 
aim it is to show that there is only one highest Lord ever 
unchanging, whose substance is cognition^, and who, by 
means of Nescience, manifests himself in various ways, just 
as a thaumaturg appears in different shapes by means of his 
magical power. Besides that Lord there is no other sub- 
stance of cognition. — If, now, the Sutrakira raises and 
refutes the doubt whether a certain passage which (in 
reality) refers to the Lord does refer to the individual soul, 
as he does in this and the preceding Shtras he does so 
for the following purpose. To the highest Self which is 
eternally pure, intelligent and free, which is never changing, 
one only, not in contact with anything, devoid of form, the 
opposite characteristics of the individual soul are errone- 
ously ascribed ; just as ignorant men ascribe blue colour to 
the colourless ether. In order to remove this erroneous 
opinion by means of Vedic passages tending either to prove 
the unity of the Self or to disprove the doctrine of duality 
— which passages he strengthens by arguments— he insists 
on the difference of the highest Self from the individual 
soul, does however not mean to prove thereby that the soul 
is different from the highest Self, but, whenever speaking of 
the soul, refers to its distinction (from the Self) as forming 
an item of ordinary thought, due to the power of Nescience. 
For thus, he thinks, the Vedic injunctions of works which are 
given with a view to the states of acting and enjoying, 
natural (to the non-enlightened soul), are not stultified. — 
That, however, the absolute unity of the Self is the real 
purport of the ^astra’s teaching, the Sutrakdra declares, for 
instance, in I, i, 30 The refutation of the reproach of 


^ I, e. of whom cognition is not a mere attribute. 

^ Although in reality there is no such thing as an individual 
soul. 

® Nanu ^tvabrahmawor aikyam na kvapi sfitrakaro mukhalo 
vadati kirn tu sarvatra bhedam eva, ato naikyam ish/am tatrdha 
pratipidyam tv iti. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 2 1. I9I 


futility raised against the injunctions of works has already 
been set forth by us, on the ground of the distinction 
between such persons as possess full knowledge, and such as 
do not. 

20. And the reference (to the individual soul) has 
a different meaning. 

The alleged reference to the individual soul which has 
been pointed out (by the phrvapakshin) in the passage 
complementary to the passage about the small ether 
(‘Now that serene being,’ Src., VIII, 3, 4) teaches, if the 
small ether is interpreted to mean the highest Lord, neither 
the worship of the individual soul nor any qualification of 
the subject under discussion (viz. the small ether), and is 
therefore devoid of meaning. — On that account the Sutra 
declares that the reference has another meaning, i. e. that 
the reference to the individual soul is not meant to deter- 
mine the nature of the individual soul, but rather the nature 
of the highest Lord. In the following manner. The indi- 
vidual soul which, in the passage referred to, is called the 
serene being, acts in the waking state as the ruler of the 
comprising the body and the sense-organs ; 
permeates in sleep the na^/is of the body, and enjoys the 
dream visions resulting from the impressions of the waking 
state ; and, finally, desirous of reaching an inner refuge, rises 
in the state of deep sleep beyond its imagined connexion 
with the gross and the subtle body, reaches the highest 
light, i. e. the highest Brahman previously called ether, and 
thus divesting itself of the state of specific cognition appears 
in its own (true) nature. The highest light which the soul 
is to reach and through which it is manifested in its true 
nature is the Self, free from sin and so on, which is there 
represented as the object of worship. — In this sense the 
reference to the individual soul can be admitted by those 
also who maintain that in reality the highest Lord is 
meant. 

21. If it be said that on account of the scriptural 



192 


vedInta-sOtras. 


declaration of the smallness (of the ether) (the Lord 
cannot be meant ; we reply that) that has been ex- 
plained (before), 

The purvapakshin has remarked that the smallness of 
the ether stated by Scripture (‘ In it is that small ether ’) 
does not agree with the highest Lord, that it may however 
be predicated of the individual soul which (in another 
passage) is compared to the point of a goad. As that remark 
calls for a refutation we point out that it has been refuted 
already, it having been shown — under I, n, 7 — that a rela- 
tive smallness may be attributed to the Lord. The same 
refutation is — as the Sutra points out— to be applied here 
also. — That smallness is, moreover, contradicted by that 
scriptural passage which compares (the ether within the 
heart) with the known (universal) ether. (‘ As large as is 
this ether, so large is the ether within the heart.') 

2 2. On account of the acting after (i. e. the shining 
after), (that after which sun, moon, &c, are said to 
shine is the highest Self), and (because by the light) 
of him (all this is said to be lighted). 

We read (Mu. Up. II, a, 10, and Ka. Up. V, 15), ‘The 
sun does not shine there, nor the moon and the stars, nor 
these lightnings, much less this fire. After him when he 
shines everything shines ; by the light of him all this is 
lighted.’ The question here arises whether he ‘ after whom 
when he shines everything shines, and by whose light ail 
this is lighted,’ is some luminous substance, or the highest 
Self (pra^wa atman). 

A luminous substance, the purvapakshin maintains. — 
Why ? — Because the passage denies the shining only of 
such luminous bodies as the sun and the like. It is known 
(from every-day experience) that luminous bodies such as 
the moon and the stars do not shine at daytime when the 
sun, which is itself a luminous body, is shining. Hence we 
infer that that thing on account of which all this, includ- 
ing the moon, the stars, and the sun himself, does not 




I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 2 2. 


193 


shine is likewise a thing of light. The ‘shining after’ 
also is possible only if there is a luminous body already , 
for we know from experience that ‘acting after’ (imita- 
tion) of any kind takes place only when there are more 
than one agent of similar nature ; one. man, for instance, 
walks after another man who walks himself. Therefore 
we consider it settled that the passage refers to some 
luminous body. 

To this we reply that the highest Self only can be 
meant. — Why? — On account of the acting after. The 
shining after mentioned in the passage, ‘ After him when 
he shines everything shines,’ is possible only if the pra^;?a 
Self, i. e. the highest Self, is understood. Of that pr^^/la 
Self another scriptural passage says, ‘ His form is light, 
his thoughts are true’ [Kh. Up. Ill, 14, 2). On the other 
hand, it is not by any means known that the sun, &c. shines 
after some other luminous body. Moreover, on account 
of the equality of nature of all luminous bodies such as 
the sun and the like, there is no need for them of any other 
luminous body after which they should shine ; for we see 
that a lamp, for instance, does not ‘ shine after ’ another 
lamp. Nor is there any such absolute rule (as the pur- 
vapakshin asserted) that acting after is observed only 
among things of similar nature. It is rather observed 
among things of dissimilar nature also ; for a red-hot iron 
ball acts after, i. e. burns after the burning fire, and the dust 
of the ground blows (is blown) after the blowing wind. — 
The clause ‘ on account of the acting after ’ (which forms 
part of the Sutra) points to the shining after (mentioned 
in the scriptural Hoka under discussion) ; the clause ‘ and 
of him ’ points to the fourth pada of the same jloka. The 
meaning of this latter clause is that the cause assigned 
for the light of the sun, &c. (in the passage ‘ by the light 
of him everything is lighted ’) intimates the prd^wa Self. 
For of that Self Scripture says, ‘ Him the gods worship 
as the light of lights, as immortal time ’ (Bn. Up. IV, 4, 
16). That, on the other hand, the light of the sun, the 
moon, &c. should shine by some other (physical) light is, in 
the first place, not known ; and, in the second place, absurd 

[34J 


o 



194 


vedAnta-s^tras. 


as one (physical) light is counteracted by another. — Or 
else the cause assigned for the shining does not apply only 
to the sun and the other bodies mentioned in the i-loka ; 
but the meaning (of the last pada) rather is — as we may 
conclude from the comprehensive statement ‘ all this ’ — 
that the manifestation of this entire world consisting of 
names and forms, acts, agents and fruits (of action) has 
for its cause the existence of the light of Brahman ; just 
as the existence of the light of the sun is the cause of the 
manifestation of all form and colour. — Moreover, the text 
shows by means of the word ‘ there ’ (‘ the sun does not 
shine there,’ &c.) that the passage is to be connected with 
the general topic, and that topic is Brahman as appears 
from Mu. Up. II, 2, 5, ‘ In whom the heaven, the earth, and 
the sky are woven,’ &c. The same appears from a passage 
subsequent (on the one just quoted and immediately pre- 
ceding the passage under discussion). ‘ In the highest 
golden sheath there is the Brahman without passion and 
without parts ; that is pure, that is the light of lights, that 
is it which they know who know the Self’ This passage 
giving rise to the question, ‘ How is it the light of lights? ’ 
there is occasion for the reply given in ‘ The sun does 
not shine there,’ &c. — In refutation of the assertion that 
the shining of luminous bodies such as the sun and the 
moon can be denied only in case of there being another 
luminous body— as, for instance, the light of the moon and 
the stars is denied only when the sun is shining — we point 
out that it has been shown that he (the Self) only can be 
the luminous being referred to, nothing else. And it is 
quite possible to deny the shining of sun, moon, and so on 
with regard to Brahman; for whatever is perceived is 
perceived by the light of Brahman only so that sun, moon, 
&c. can be said to shine in it; while Brahman as self- 
luminous is not perceived by means of any other light. 
Brahman manifests everything else, but is not manifested 
by anything else ; according to such scriptural passages as, 

‘ By the Self alone as his light man sits,’ &c. (Brz. Up. 
IV, 3, 6), and ‘ He is incomprehensible, for he cannot be 
comprehended ’ (Brl Up. IV, 2, 4). 


I adhyIya, 3 pAda, 24. 


195 


23. Moreover Smr/ti also speaks of him (i. e. of 
the prd^iia Self as being the universal light). 

Moreover that aspect of the pr%"; 1 a Self is spoken of 
in Smnti also, viz. in the Bhagavad Gita (XV, 6, 12), 

‘ Neither the sun, nor the moon, nor the fire illumines that ; 
having gone into which men do not return, that is my 
highest seat’ And ‘The light which abiding in the sun 
illumines the whole world, and that which is in the moon 
and that which is in the fire, all that light know to be 
mine.’ 

24. On account of the term, (viz. the term ‘ lord ’ 
applied to it) the (person) measured (by a thumb) (is 
the highest Lord). 

We read (Ka. Up. II, 4, 12), ‘The person of the size of 
a thumb stands in the middle of the Self,’ &c., and (II, 
4, 13), ‘ That person, of the size of a thumb, is like a light 
without smoke, lord of the past and of the future, he is 
the same to-day and to-morrow. This is that.’ — The 
question here arises whether the person of the size of a 
thumb mentioned in the text is the cognitional (individual) 
Self or the highest Self. 

The purvapakshin maintains that on account of the 
declaration of the person’s size the cognitional Self is 
meant. For to the highest Self which is of infinite length 
and breadth Scripture would not ascribe the measure of 
a span ; of the cognitional Self, on the other hand, which 
is connected with limiting adjuncts, extension of the size 
of a span may, by means of some fictitious assumption, be 
predicated. Smr/ti also confirms this, ‘ Then Yama drew 
forth, by force, from the body of Satyavat the person of 
the size of a thumb tied to Yama’s noose and helpless’ 
(Mahabh. Ill, 16763}. For as Yama could not pull out by 
force the highest Self, the passage is clearly seen to refer 
to the transmigrating (individual soul) of the size of a 
thumb, and we thence infer that the same Self is meant in 
the Vedic passage under discussion. 

To this we reply that the person a thumb long can only 

O 2 



196 


vedanta-s^)tras. 


be the highest Lord. — Why? — On account of the term 
‘ lord of the past and of the future.’ For none but the 
highest Lord is the absolute ruler of the past and the 
future. — Moreover, the clause ‘this is that’ connects the 
passage with that which had been enquired about, and 
therefore forms the topic of discussion. And what had 
been enquired about is Brahman, ‘ That which thou seest 
as neither this nor that, as neither effect nor cause, as 
neither past nor future, tell me that’ (1,2, 14). — ‘On ac- 
count of the term,’ i. e. on account of the direct statement, 
in the text, of a designation, viz. the term ‘ Lord,’ we under- 
stand that the highest Lord is meant’-. — But still the question 
remains how a certain extension can be attributed to the 
omnipresent highest Self. — The reply to this is given in 
the next Sfitra. 

25. But with reference to the heart (the highest 
Self is said to be of the size of a span), as men are 
entitled (to the study of the Veda). 

The measure of a span is ascribed to the highest Lord, 
although omnipresent with reference to his abiding within 
the heart ; just as to ether (space) the measure of a cubit 
is ascribed with reference to the joint of a bamboo. For, 
on the one hand, the measure of a span cannot be ascribed 
directly to the highest Self which exceeds all measure, 
and, on the other hand, it has been shown that none but 
the highest Lord can be meant here, on account of the 
term ‘ Lord,’ and so on. — But — an objection may be raised — 
as the size of the heart varies in the different classes of 
living beings it cannot be maintained that the declaration 


^ This last sentence is directed against the possible objection 
that 'jabda,’ which the Sfjtra brings forward as an argument in 
favour of the highest Lord being meant, has the sense of ‘ sentence ’ 
(vakya), and is therefore of less force than lihga, i. e. indicatory or 
inferential mark which is represented in our passage by the 
angush/z^amatrat^ of the purusha, and favours the ^iva- interpreta- 
tion. .Sabda, the text remarks, here means jruti, i. e. direct enun- 
ciation, and iruti ranks, as a means of proof, higher than lihga. 




I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 25, 


197 


of the highest Self being of the size of a thumb can be 
explained with reference to the heart. — To this objection 
the second half of the Sutra replies : On account of men 
(only) being entitled. For the ^astra, although propounded 
without distinction (i. e. although not itself specifying 
what class of beings is to proceed according to its pre- 
cepts), does in reality entitle men ^ only (to act according to 
its precepts) ; for men only (of the three higher castes) are, 
firstly, capable (of complying w'ith the precepts of the 
j'astra) ; are, secondly, desirous (of the results of actions 
enjoined by the j’astra) ; are, thirdly, not excluded by pro- 
hibitions ; and are, fourthly, subject to the precepts about 
the upanayana ceremony and so on This point has been 
explained in the section treating of the definition of adhi- 
kara (Purva Mim. S. VI, i). — Now the human body has 
ordinarily a fixed size, and hence the heart also has a fixed 
size, viz. the size of a thumb. Hence, as men (only) are 
entitled to study and practise the jdstra, the highest Self 
may, with reference to its dwelling in the human heart, 
be spoken of as being of the size of a thumb. — In reply 
to the pfirvapakshin’s reasoning that on account of the 
statement of size and on account of Smrfti we can under- 
stand by him who is of the size of a thumb the trans- 
migrating soul only, we remark that — analogously to such 
passages as ‘ That is the Self,’ ‘ That art thou ’ — our passage 


^ I. e. men belonging to the three upper castes. 

The first reason excludes animals, gods, and rfshis. Gods 
cannot themselves perform sacrifices, the essential feature of which 
is the parting, on the part of the sacrificer, with an offering meant 
for the gods. i?fshis cannot perform sacrifices in the course of 
whose performance the ancestral mhis of the sacrificer are invoked. 
- The second reason excludes those men whose only desire is 
emancipation and who therefore do not care for the perishable 
fruits of sacrifices.— The third and fourth reasons exclude the 
*S'udras who are indirectly disqualified for jastric works because the 
Veda in different places gives rules for the three higher castes only, 
and for whom the ceremony of the upanayana — indispensable for 
all who wish to study the Veda— is not prescribed.— Cp. Pfirva 
Mimfi?«sa Sfitras VI, i. 




198 


vedanta-sOtras. 


teaches that the transmigrating soul which is of the size 
of a thumb is (in reality) Brahman. For the Veddnta- 
passages have a twofold purport ; some of them aim at 
setting forth the nature of the highest Self, some at 
teaching the unity of the individual soul with the highest 
Self. Our passage teaches the unity of the individual 
soul with the highest Self, not the size of anything. This 
point is made clear further on in the Upanishad, ‘The 
person of the size of a thumb, the inner Self, is always 
settled in the heart of men. Let a man draw that Self 
forth from his body with steadiness, as one draws the pith 
from a reed. Let him know that Self as the Bright, as the 
Immortal ’ (II, 6, 17). 

26, Also (beings) above them, (viz. men) (are 
qualified for the study and practice of the Veda), 
on account of the possibility (of it), according to 
Bddariya^^a. 

It has been said above that the passage about him who 
is of the size of a thumb has reference to the human heart, 
because men are entitled to study and act according to the 
i’astra. This gives us an occasion for the following discussion. 
— It is true that thejastra entitles men, but, at the same time, 
there is no exclusive rule entitling men only to the know- 
ledge of Brahman; the teacher, Badarayawa, rather thinks 
that the jastra entitles those (classes of beings) also which 
are above men, viz. gods, and so on. — On what account? — 
On the account of possibility. — For in their cases also the 
different causes on which the qualification depends, such as 
having certain desires, and so on, may exist. In the first 
place, the gods also may have the desire of final release, 
caused by the reflection that all effects, objects, and powers 
are non-permanent. In the second place, they may be 
capable of it as their corporeality appears from mantras, 
arthavidas, itihasas, purd/zas, and ordinary experience. In 
the third place, there is no prohibition (excluding them like 
Sudras). Nor does, in the fourth place, the scriptural rule 
about the upanayana-ceremony annul their title; for that 



I ADHyIyA, 3 PADA, 27. 


199 


ceremony merely subserves the study of the Veda, and to 
the gods the Veda is manifest of itself (without study). 
That the gods, moreover, for the purpose of acquiring 
knowledge, undergo discipleship, and the like, appears 
from such scriptural passages as ‘ One hundred and one 
years Indra lived as a disciple with Pra^dpati ’ {Kh. Up. 
VIII, II, 3), and ‘ Bhrfgu Varum went to his father Varu^za, 
saying, “ Sir, teach me Brahman ’ (Taitt. Up. Ill, i). — And 
the reasons which have been given above against gods and 
rzshis being entitled to perform religious works (such as 
sacrifices), viz. the circumstance of there being no other gods 
(to whom the gods could offer sacrifices), and of there being 
no other rzshis (who could be invoked during the sacrifice), 
do not apply to the case of branches of knowledge. For Indra 
and the other gods, when applying themselves to knowledge, 
have no acts to perform with a view to Indra, and so on; 
nor have Bhngu and other ^'fshis, in the same case, to do 
anything with the circumstance of their belonging to the 
same gotra as Bhrfgu, &c. What, then, should stand in 
the way of the gods’ and r/shis’ right to acquire knowledge ? 
— Moreover, the passage about that which is of the size of a 
thumb remains equally valid, if the right of the gods, &c. 
is admitted ; it has then only to be explained in each par- 
ticular case by a reference to the particular size of the 
thumb (of the class of beings spoken of). 

27. If it be said that (the corppreal individuality 
of the gods involves) a contradiction to (sacrificial) 
works ; we deny that, on account of the observation 
of the assumption (on the part of the gods) of several 
(forms). 

If the right of the gods, and other beings superior to men, 
to the acquisition of knowledge is founded on the assumption 
of their corporeality, &c., we shall have to admit, in conse- 
quence of that corporeality, that Indra and the other gods 
stand in the relation of subordinate members (ahga) to 
saciificial acts, by means of their being present in person 



200 


VEDANTA- sOtRAS. 


just as the priests are. But this admission will lead to ‘ a 
contradiction in the sacrificial acts/ because the circumstance 
of the gods forming the members of sacrificial acts by means 
of their personal presence, is neither actually observed nor 
possible. For it is not possible that one and the same 
Indra should, at the same time, be present in person at many 
sacrifices. 

To this we reply, that there is no such contradiction. — 
Why? — On account of the assumption of several (forms). 
For it is possible for one and the same divine Self to assume 
several forms at the same time. — How is that known? — From 
observation. — For a scriptural passage at first replies to the 
question how many gods there are, by the declaration that 
there are ‘ Three and three hundred, three and three thou- 
sand,’ and subsequently, on the question who they are, 
declares ‘They (the 303 and 3003) are only the various 
powers of them, in reality there are only thirty-three gods ’ 
(Brf. Up. Ill, 9, I, 2) ; showing thereby that one and the 
same divine Self may at the same tijne appear in many 
forms. After that it proceeds to show that these thirty- 
three gods themselves are in reality contained in six, five, 
&c., and, finally, by replying to the question, Who is the one 
god ? ’ that Breath is the one god, shows that the gods are 
all forms of Breath, and that Breath, therefore, can at the 
same time appear in many forms. — Smnti also has a similar 
statement, ‘A Yogin, O hero of the Bharatas, may, by his 
power, multiply his Self in many thousand shapes, and in 
them walk about on the earth. In some he may enjoy 
the objects, in others he may undergo dire penance, and, 
finally, he may again retract them all, just as the sun 
retracts the multitude of his rays.’ If such Smrfti pas- 
sages as the above declare that even Yogins, who have 
merely acquired various extraordinary powers, such as 
subtlety of body, and the like, may animate several bodies 
at the same time, how much more capable of such feats must 
the gods be, who naturally possess all supernatural powers 
The gods thus being able to assume several shapes, a god 
may divide himself into many forms and enter into relation 
with many sacrifices at the same time, remaining all the 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 28. 


201 


while unseen by others, in coiisequence of his power to 
render himself invisible. 

The latter part of the Shtra may be explained in a 
different manner also, viz. as meaning that even beings 
enjoying corporeal individuality are seen to enter into mere 
subordinate relation to more than one action. Sometimes, 
indeed, one individual does not at the same time enter into 
subordinate relation to different actions ; one Brahma«a, for 
instance, is not at the same time entertained by many enter- 
tainers. But in other cases one individual stands in subor- 
dinate relation to many actions at the same time; one 
Brihma?^a, for instance, may constitute the object of the 
reverence done to him by many persons at the same time. 
Similarly, it is possible that, as the sacrifice consists in the 
parting (on the part of the sacrifice!* with some offering) 
with a view (to some divinity), many persons may at the 
same time part with their respective offerings, all of them 
having in view one and the same individual divinity. The 
individuality of the gods does not, therefore, involve any 
contradiction in sacrificial works. 

28. If it be said (that a contradiction will result) 
in respect of the word; we refute this objection on 
the ground that (the world) originates from the 
word, as is shown by perception and inference. 

Let it then be granted that, from the admission of the 
corporeal individuality of the gods, no contradiction will 
result in the case of sacrificial works. Still a contradic- 
tion will result in respect of the ‘ word ’ (xabda). — How ? — 
The authoritativeness of the Veda has been proved ‘from 
its independence,’ basing on the original (eternal) connexion 
of the word with its sense (‘ the thing signified ’)^. But now, 
although a divinity possessing corporeal individuality, such 
as admitted above, may, by means of its supernatural 
powers, be able to enjoy at the same time the oblations 


^ The reference is to Pfirva Mtma»zsS Sfitras I, i, 5 (not to I, 2, 
21, as stated in Muir’s Sanskrit Texts, III, p. 69). 




202 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


which form part of several sacrifices, yet it will, on account 
of its very individuality, be subject to birth and death just 
as we men are, and hence, the eternal connexion of the 
eternal word with a non-eternal thing being destroyed, a 
contradiction will arise with regard to the authoritative- 
ness proved to belong to the word of the Veda. 

To this we reply that no such contradiction exists. — Why ? 
— ‘ On account of their origin from it.' For from that very 
same word of the Veda the world, with the gods and other 
beings, originates. — But — an objection will be raised — in 
Sutra I, 1 , 2 (‘That whence there is the origin, &c. of this 
world') it has been proved that theworld originates from Brah- 
man ; how then can it be said here that it originates from the 
word ? And, moreover, even if the origin of the world from 
the word of the Veda be admitted, how is the contradiction 
in regard to the word removed thereby, inasmuch as the 
Vasus, the Rudras, the Adityas, the Vhvedevas, and the 
Maruts^ are non-eternal beings, because produced ; and if 
they are non-eternal, what is there to preclude the non- 
eternality of the Vedic words Vasu, &c. designating them ? 
For it is known from every-day life that only when the son 
of Devadatta is born, the name Ya^^adatta is given to him 
(lit. made for him}^. Hence we adhere to our opinion 
that a contradiction does arise with regard to the ‘ word.’ 

This objection we negative, on the ground that we observe 
the eternity of the connexion between such words as cow, 
and so on, and the things denoted by them. For, although 
the individuals of the (species denoted by the word) cow 
have an origin, their species^ does not have an origin, since 
of (the three categories) substances, qualities, and actions 
the individuals only originate, not the species. Now it is 
with the species that the words are connected, not with the 
individuals, which, as being infinite in number, are not 
capable of entering into that connexion. Hence, although 


^ In which classes of beings all the gods are comprised. 

^ Which shows that together with the non-eternality of the thing 
denoted there goes the non-eternality of the denoting word. 

® Akn'ti, best translated by etSos. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 28. 


203 


the individuals do not originate, no contradiction arises 
in the case of words such as cow, and the like, since the 
species are eternal. Similarly, although individual gods are 
admitted to originate, there arises no contradiction in the 
case of such words as Vasu, and the like, since the species 
denoted by them are eternal. And that the gods, and so 
on, belong to different species, is to be concluded from 
the descriptions of their various personal appearance, 
such as given in the mantras, arthavadas, &c. Terms such 
as ‘ Indra ’ rest on the connexion (of some particular being) 
with some particular place, analogously to terms such as 
‘army-leader;’ hence, whoever occupies that particular 
place is called by that particular name. — The origination 
of the world from the ‘ word ’ is not to be understood in that 
sense, that the word constitutes the material cause of the 
world, as Brahman does ; but while there exist the ever- 
lasting words, whose essence is the power of denotation in 
connexion with their eternal sense (i. e. the ikrftis denoted), 
the accomplishment of such individual things as are capable 
of having those words applied to them is called an origina- 
tion from those words. 

■^-How then is it known that the world originates from 
the word? — ‘From perception and inference.’ Perception 
here denotes Scripture which, in order to be authoritative, 
is independent (of anything else). ‘ Inference ’ denotes 
Smr?ti which, in order to be authoritative, depends on 
something else (viz. Scripture). These two declare that 
creation is preceded by the word. Thus a scriptural 
passage says, ‘At the word these Pra^ipati created the 
gods ; at the words were poured out he created men ; at 
the word drops he created the fathers; at the words 
through the filter he created the Soma cups ; at the words 
the swift ones he created the stotra; at the words to all 
he created the ^astra; at the word blessings he created 
the other beings.’ And another passage says, ‘ He with 
his mind united himself with speech (i. e. the word of 
the Veda. — Brz. Up. I, 2, 4). Thus Scripture declares in 
different places that the word precedes the creation. — 
Smnti also delivers itself as follows, ‘ In the beginning 



204 


vedanta-sOtras. 


a divine voice, eternal, without beginning or end, formed 
of the Vedas was uttered by Svayambhu, from which 
all activities proceeded,’ By the ‘ uttering ’ of the voice 
we have here to understand the starting of the oral 
tradition (of the Veda), because of a voice without 
beginning or end ‘uttering’ in any other sense cannot 
be predicated. — Again, we read, ‘ In the beginning Ma- 
he,yvara shaped from the words of the Veda the names 
and forms of all beings and the procedure of all actions.’ 
And again, ‘ The several names, actions, and conditions of 
all things he shaped in the beginning from the words of the 
Veda’ (Manu I, ai). Moreover, we all know from observa- 
tion that any one when setting about some thing which he 
wishes to accomplish first remembers the word denoting 
the thing, and after that sets to work. We therefore con- 
clude that before the creation the Vedic words became 
manifest in the mind of Pra^apati the creator, and that 
after that he created the things corresponding to those 
words. Scripture also, where it says (Taitt. Bra. II, 2, 4, 2) 
‘uttering bhfir he created the earth,’ &c,, shows that the 
worlds such as the earth, Sic. became manifest, i. e. were 
created from the words bhur, &c. which had become mani- 
fest in the mind (of Pra^pati). 

Of what nature then is the ‘ word ’ with a view to which 
it is said that the world originates from the ‘word?’ — It 
is the spho/a, the purvapakshin says^. For on the as- 


^ The purvapakshin, i. e. here the grammarian maintains, for the 
reasons specified further on, that there exists in the case of 
words a supersensuous entity called spho/a which is manifested by 
the letters of the word, and, if apprehended by the mind, itself mani- 
fests the sense of the word. The term spho/a may, according as it 
is viewed in either of these lights, be explained as the manifesto!' or 
that which is manifested. — The spho/a is a grammatical fiction, the 
word in so far as it is apprehended by us as a whole. That we 
cannot identify it with the ‘notion’ (as Deussen seems inclined to do, 
p. 80) follows from its being distinctly called 'vdl’aka or abhidhiyaka, 
and its being represented as that which causes the conception 
of the sense of a word (arthadhihetu), 




I adhyIya, 3 pAda, 28. 


205 


sumption that the letters are the word, the doctrine that 
the individual gods, and so on, originates from the eternal 
words of the Veda could not in any way be proved, 
since the letters perish as soon as they are produced 
(i. e. pronounced). These perishable letters are more- 
over apprehended as differing according to the pronun- 
ciation of the individual speaker. For this reason we are 
able to determine, merely from the sound of the voice 
of some unseen person whom we- hear reading, who is 
reading, whether Devadatta or Ya^/^adatta or some other 
man. And it cannot be maintained that this apprehension 
of difference regarding the letters is an erroneous one ; 
for we do not apprehend anything else whereby it is 
refuted. Nor is it reasonable to maintain that the ap- 
prehension of the sense of a word results from the letters. 
For it can neither be maintained that each letter by itself 
intimates the sense, since that would be too wide an assump- 
tion ^ ; nor that there takes place a simultaneous appre- 
hension of the whole aggregate of letters ; since the letters 
succeed one another in time. Nor can we admit the explan- 
ation that the last letter of the word together with the im- 
pressions produced by the perception of the preceding 
letters is that which makes us apprehend the sense. For 
the word makes us apprehend the sense only if it is itself 
apprehended in so far as having reference to the mental 
grasp of the constant connexion (of the word and the 
sense), just as smoke makes us infer the existence of fire 
only when it is itself apprehended ; but an apprehension 
of the last letter combined with the impressions produced 
by the preceding letters does not actually take place, 
because those impressions are not objects of perception^. 
Nor, again, can it be maintained that (although those im- 


^ For that each letter by itself expresses the sense is not 
observed ; and if it did so, the other letters of the word would have 
to be declared useless. 

® In order to enable us to apprehend the sense from the word, 
there is required the actual consciousness of the last letter plus the 
impressions of the preceding letters ; just as smoke enables us to 




206 


vedanta-sOtras. 


pressions are not objects of perception, yet they may be 
inferred from their effects, and that thus) the actual per- 
ception of the last letter combined with the impressions 
left by the preceding letters — which impressions are appre- 
hended from their effects — is that which intimates the sense 
of the word ; for that effect of the impressions, viz. the 
remembrance of the entire word, is itself something con- 
sisting of parts which succeed each other in time. — From 
all this it follows that the spho^a is the word. After the 
apprehending agent, i. e. the buddhi, has, through the ap- 
prehension of the several letters of the word, received 
rudimentary impressions, and after those impressions have 
been matured through the apprehension of the last letter, 
the spho/a presents itself in the buddhi all at once as the 
object of one mental act of apprehension. — And it must not 
be maintained that that one act of apprehension is merely 
an act of remembrance having for its object the letters 
of the word ; for the letters which are more than one 
cannot form the object of one act of apprehension. — As 
that spho/a is recognised as the same as often as the word 
is pronounced, it is eternal ; while the apprehension of 
difference referred to above has for its object the letters 
merely. From this eternal word, which is of the nature 
of the sphoi^a and possesses denotative power, there is 
produced the object denoted, i. e. this world which consists 
of actions, agents, and results of action. 

Against this doctrine the reverend Upavarsha maintains 
that the letters only are the word. — But — an objection is 
raised — it has been said above that the letters no sooner 
produced pass away ! — That assertion is not true, we reply ; 
for they are recognised as the same letters (each time they 
are produced anew). — Nor can it be maintained that the 
recognition is due to similarity only, as in the case of hairs, 
for instance; for the fact of the recognition being a re- 
cognition in the strict sense of the word is not contradicted 
by any other means of proof. — Nor, again, can it be said 

infer the existence of fire only if we are actually conscious of the 
smoke. But that actual consciousness does not take place because 
the impressions are not objects of perceptive consciousness. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 pIdA, 28. 


207 


that the recognition has its cause in the species (so that 
not the same individual letter would be recognised^ but only 
a letter belonging to the same species as other letters 
heard before) ; for, as a matter of fact, the same individual 
letters are recognised. That the recognition of the letters 
rests on the species could be maintained only if whenever 
the letters are pronounced different individual letters were 
apprehended, just as several cows are apprehended as 
different individuals belonging to the same species. But 
this is actually not the case; for the (same) individual 
letters are recognised as often as they are pronounced. If, 
for instance, the word cow is pronounced twice, we think 
not that two different words have been pronounced, but 
that the same individual word has been repeated. — But, 
our opponent reminds us, it has been shown above, that 
the letters are apprehended as different owing to differences 
of pronunciation, as appears from the fact that we apprehend 
a difference when merely hearing the sound of Devadatta or 
Ya^wadatta reading. — Although, we reply, it is a settled 
matter that the letters are recognised as the same, yet we 
admit that there are differences in the apprehension of the 
letters ; but as the letters are articulated by means of the 
conjunction and disjunction (of the breath with the palate, 
the teeth, &c.), those differences are rightly ascribed to the 
various character of the articulating agents and not to 
the intrinsic nature of the letters themselves. Those, 
moreover, who maintain that the individual letters are 
different have, in order to account for the fact of recogni- 
tion, to assume species of letters, and further to admit 
that the apprehension of difference is conditioned by ex- 
ternal factors. Is it then not much simpler to assume, 
as we do, that the apprehension of difference is conditioned 
by external factors while the recognition is due to the 
intrinsic nature of the letters? And this very fact of 
recognition is that mental process which prevents us from 
looking on the apprehension of difference as having the 
letters for its object (so that the opponent was wrong in 
denying the existence of such a process). For how should, 
for instance, the one syllable ga, when it is pronounced in 



208 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


the same moment by several persons, be at the same time 
of different nature, viz. accented with the udAtta, the 
anudatta, and the Svarita and nasal as well as non-nasal ^ ? 
Or else^ — and this is the preferable explanation — we 
assume that the difference of apprehension is caused not 
by the letters but by the tone (dhvani). By this tone we 
have to understand that which enters the ear of a person 
who is listening from a distance and not able to distinguish 
the separate letters, and which, for a person standing near, 
affects the letters with its own distinctions, such as high 
or low pitch and so on. It is on this tone that all the 
distinctions of udatta, anudatta, and so on depend, and not 
on the intrinsic nature of the letters ; for they are recognised 
as the same whenever they are pronounced. On this theory 
only we gain a basis for the distinctive apprehension of 
the uditta, the anuddtta, and the like. For on the theory 
first propounded (but now rejected), we should have to 
assume that the distinctions of udatta and so on are due 
to the processes of conjunction and disjunction described 
above, since the letters themselves, which are ever re- 
cognised as the same, are not different. But as those 
processes of conjunction and disjunction are not matter 
of perception, we cannot definitely ascertain in the letters 
any differences based on those processes, and hence the 
apprehension of the udatta and so on remains without 
a basis. — Nor should it be urged that from the dif- 
ference of the udatta and so on there results also 
a difference of the letters recognised. For a difference 
in one matter does not involve a difference in some 
other matter which in itself is free from difference. 
Nobody, for instance, thinks that because the individuals 

^ ‘How should it be so?’ i. e. it cannot be so; and on that 
account the differences apprehended do not belong to the letters 
themselves, but to the external conditions mentioned above. 

^ With ‘or else’ begins the exposition of the finally accepted 
theory as to the cause why the same letters are apprehended as 
different. Hitherto the cause had been found in the variety of the 
upfidhis of the letters. Now a new distinction is made between 
articulated letters and non-articulated tone. 


I ADHYAyA, 3 PADA, 28. 


209 


are different from each other the species also contains a 
difference in itself. 

The assumption of the spho/a is further gratuitous, be- 
cause the sense of the word may be apprehended from the 
letters. — But — our opponent here objects — I do not assume 
the existence of the spho/a. I, on the contrary, actually 
perceive it ; for after the buddhi has been impressed by the 
successive apprehension of the letters of the word, the 
spho^'a all at once presents itself as the object of cognition. 
— You are mistaken, we reply. The object of the cognitional 
act of which you speak is simply the letters of the word. 
That one comprehensive cognition which follows upon the 
apprehension of the successive letters of the word has for 
its object the entire aggregate of the letters constituting the 
word, and not anything else. We conclude this from the 
circumstance that in that final comprehensive cognition 
there are included those letters only of which a definite 
given word consists, and not any other letters. If that 
cognitional act had for its object the spho^fa — i. e. something 
different from the letters of the given word — then those 
letters would be excluded from it just as much as the letters 
of any other word. But as this is not the case, it follows 
that that final comprehensive act of cognition is nothing but 
an act of remembrance which has the letters of the word 
for its object. — Our opponent has asserted above that the 
letters of a word being several cannot form the object of 
one mental act. But there he is wrong again. The ideas 
which we have of a row, for instance, or a wood or an army, 
or of the numbers ten, hundred, thousand, and so on, show 
that also such things as comprise several unities can become 
the objects of one and the same cognitional act. The idea 
which has for its object the word as one whole is a derived 
one, in so far as it depends on the determination of one 
sense in many letters ^ ; in the same way as the idea of a 


^ I. e. it is not directly one idea, for it has for its object more 
than one letter; but it may be called one in a secondaiy sense 
because it is based on the determinative knowledge that the letters, 
although more than one, express one sense only. 

[34] P 




210 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


wood, an army, and so on. — But — our opponent may here 
object — if the word were nothing else but the letters which 
in their aggregate become the object of one iriental act, 
such couples of words as ^ra and rkga. or pika and kapi 
would not be cognised as different words ; for here the same 
letters are presented to consciousness in each of the words 
constituting one couple. — There is indeed, we reply, in 
both cases a comprehensive consciousness of the same 
totality of letters ; but just as ants constitute the idea of a 
row only if they march one after the other, so the letters 
also constitute the idea of a certain word only if they follow 
each other in a certain order. Hence it is not contrary to 
reason that the same letters are cognised as different words, 
in consequence of the different order in which they are 
arranged. 

The hypothesis of him who maintains that the letters arc 
the word may therefore be finally formulated as follows. 
The letters of which a word consists — assisted by a certain 
order and number — have, through traditional use, entered 
into a connexion with a definite sense. At the time when 
they are employed they present themselves as such (i. e. in 
their definite order and number) to the buddhi, which, after 
having apprehended the several letters in succession, finall}'’ 
comprehends the entire aggregate, and they thus unerringly 
intimate to the buddhi their definite sense. This hypothesis 
is certainly simpler than the complicated hypothcvsis of the 
grammarians who teach that the spho^a is the word. For 
they have to disregard what is given by perception, and to 
assume something which is never perceived ; the letters 
apprehended in a definite order are said to manifest the 
spho/a, and the spho/a in its turn is said to manifest the 
sense. 

Or let it even be admitted that the letters are differ- 
ent ones each time they are pronounced ; yet, as in that 
case we necessarily must assume species of letters as 
the basis of the recognition of the individual letters, the 
function of conveying the sense which we have demon- 
strated in the case of the (individual) letters has then to be 
attributed to the species. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 30. 


21 1 


From all this it follows that the theory according to which 
the individual gods and so on originate from the eternal 
words is unobjectionable. 

29. And from this very reason there follows the 
eternity of the Veda. 

As the eternity of the Veda is founded on the absence 
of the remembrance of an agent only, a doubt with regard 
to it had been raised owing to the doctrine that the gods 
and other individuals have sprung from it. That doubt 
has been refuted in the preceding Sutra. — The present 
Sutra now confirms the, already established, eternity of 
the Veda. The eternity of the word of the Veda has to 
be assumed for this very reason, that the world with its 
definite (eternal) species, such as gods and so on, originates 
from it. — A mantra also (‘ By means of the sacrifice they 
followed the trace of speech; they found it dwelling in 
the rfshis,’ J^ig-veda Samh. X, 71, 3) shows that the 
speech found (by the rfshis) was permanent. — On this 
point Vedavyasa also speaks as follows: ‘Formerly the 
great nshis, being allowed to do so by Svayambhu, ob- 
tained, through their penance, the Vedas’ together with 
the itihftsas, which had been hidden at the end of the 
yuga.’ 

30. And on account of the equality of names and 
forms there is no contradiction (to the eternity of 
the word of the Veda) in the renovation (of the 
world) ; as is seen from ^ruti and Smr/tl 

If — the purvapakshin I'esumes — the individual gods and so 
on did, like the individual animals, originate and pass away 
in an unbroken succession so that there would be no break 
of the course of practical existence including denominations, 
things denominated and agents denominating; the con- 
nexion (between word and thing) would be eternal, and the 
objection as to a contradiction with reference to the word 
(raised in Sfitra 27) would thereby be refuted. But if, 
as vSruti and Smrfti declare, the whole threefold 


P 2 



212 


VEDANTA-sdTRAS. 


world periodically divests itself of name and form, and is 
entirely dissolved (at the end of a kalpa), and is after that 
produced anew ; how can the contradiction be considered to 
have been removed ? 

To this we reply: ‘ On account of the sameness of name 
and form.’ — Even then the beginninglessness of the world 
will have to be admitted (a point which the teacher will 
prove later on : II, i, 36). And in the beginningless sa;;^- 
sara we have to look on the (relative) beginning, and the 
dissolution connected with a new kalpa in the same light 
in which we look on the sleeping and waking states, which, 
although in them according to Scripture (a kind of) dis- 
solution and origination take place, do not give rise to 
any contradiction, since in the later waking state (subse- 
quent to the state of sleep) the practical existence is carried 
on just as in the former one. That in the sleeping and the 
waking states dissolution and origination take place is stated 
Kaush, Up. Ill, 3, ‘When a man being asleep sees no 
dream whatever he becomes one with that prd7^a alone. 
Then speech goes to him with all names, the eye with all 
forms, the ear with all sounds, the mind with all thoughts. 
And when he awakes then, as from a burning fire, sparks 
proceed in all directions, thus from that Self the pri^zas 
proceed, each towards its place ; from the prti^as the gods, 
from the gods the worlds.’ 

Well, the purvapakshin resumes, it may be that ho 
contradiction arises in the case of sleep, as during the sleep 
of one person the practical existence of other persons suffers 
no interruption, and as the sleeping person himself when 
waking from sleep may resume the very same form of 
practical existence which was his previously to his sleep. 
The case of a mah^pralaya (i. e. a general annihilation of 
the world) is however a different one, as then the entire 
current of practical existence is interrupted, and the form of 
existence of a previous kalpa can be resumed in a subsequent 
kalpa no more than an individual can resume that form of 
existence which it enjoyed in a former birth. 

This objection, we reply, is not valid. For although a 
mahapralaya does cut short the entire current of practical 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 30. 


213 


existence, yet, by the favour of the highest Lord, the Lords 
(Lvara), such as Hira?iyagarbha and so on, may continue the 
same form of existence which belonged to them in the 
pi'eceding kalpa. Although ordinary animated beings do 
not, as we see, resume that form of existence which belonged 
to them in a former birth ; still we cannot judge of the 
Lords as we do of ordinary beings. P’or as in the series 
of beings which descends from man to blades of grass a 
successive diminution of knowledge, power, and so on, is 
observed — although they all have the common attribute of 
being animated — so in the ascending series extending from 
man up to Hira^^yagarbha, a gradually increasing manifes- 
tation of knowledge, power, &c. takes place; a circumstance 
which ^ruti and Smnti mention in many places, and which 
it is impossible to deny. On that account it may very well 
be the case that the Lords, such as Hirawyagarbha and so 
on, who in a past kalpa were distinguished by superior 
knowledge and power of action, and who again appear in 
the present kalpa, do, if favoured by the highest Lord, 
continue (in the present kalpa) the same kind of existence 
which they enjoyed in the preceding kalpa ; just as a man 
who rises from sleep continues the same form of existence 
which he enjoyed previously to his sleep. Thus Scripture 
also declares, ‘ He who first creates Brahman (Hira?^ya- 
garbha) and delivers the Vedas to him, to that God who is 
the light of his own thoughts, I, seeking for release, go for 
refuge’ (S’ vet. Up. VI, 18). Gaunaka and others more- 
over declare (in the Anukrama^ris of the Veda) that the ten 
books (of the i?fg-veda) were seen by Madhu^/?’//andas and 
other nshis^. And, similarly, Smnti tells us, for every Veda, 
of men of exalted mental vision (mhis) who ‘ saw ’ the sub- 
divisions of their respective Vedas, such as ka. 7 ida.s and so 
on. Scripture also declares that the performance of the 
sacrificial action by means of the mantra is to be preceded by 
the knowledge of the nshi and so on, ' He who makes another 
person sacrifice or read by means of a mantra of which he 


^ Which circumstance proves that exalted knowledge appertains 
not only to Hirawyagarbha, but to many beings. 


214 


vedAnta-s6tras. 


does not know the rzshi, the metre, the divinity, and the 
Brahma«a, runs against a post, falls into a pit^, &c. &c., 
therefore one must know all those matters for each mantra ’ 
(Arsheya Brihma/^a, first section). — Moreover, religious duty 
is enjoined and its opposite is forbidden, in order that the 
animate beings may obtain pleasure and escape pain. 
Desire and aversion have for their objects pleasure and 
pain, known either from experience or from Scripture, and 
do not aim at anything of a different nature. As therefore 
each new creation is (nothing but) the result of the religious 
merit and demerit (of the animated beings of the preceding 
creation), it is produced with a nature resembling that of 
the preceding creation. Thus Sm«ti also declares, ‘ To 
whatever actions certain of these (animated beings) had 
turned in a former creation, to the same they turn when 
created again and again. Whether those actions were 
harmful or harmless, gentle or cruel, right or wrong, true 
or untrue, influenced by them they proceed ; hence a cer- 
tain person delights in actions of a certain kind.’ — More- 
over, this world when being dissolved (in a mahapralaya) is 
dissolved to that extent only that the potentiality (jakti) 
of the world remains, and (when it is produced again) it 
is produced from the root of that potentiality ; otherwise 
we should have to admit an effect without a cause. Nor 
have we the right to assume potentialities of different kind 
(for the different periods of the world). Hence, although 
the series of worlds from the earth upwards, and the series 
of different classes of animate beings such as gods, animals, 
and men, and the different conditions based on caste, 
Ajrama, religious duty and fruit (of works), although all 
these we say are again and again interrupted and thereupon 
produced anew ; we yet have to understand that they are, in 
the beginningless sa7;2sara, subject to a certain determinate- 
ness analogous to the determ inaten ess governing the con- 
nexion between the senses and their objects. For it is 
impossible to imagine that the relation of senses and sense- 
objects should be a different one in different creations, so 


^ Viz. naraka, the commentaries say. 



I ADHYIyA, 3 PADA, 30. 


215 


that, for instance, in some new creation a sixth sense and a 
corresponding sixth sense-object should manifest them- 
selves. As, therefore, the phenomenal world is the same in 
all kalpas and as the Lords are able to continue their 
previous forms of existence, there manifest themselves, in 
each new creation, individuals bearing the same names and 
forms as the individuals of the preceding creations, and, 
owing to this equality of names and forms, the admitted 
periodical renovations of the world in the form of general 
pralayas and general creations do not conflict with the 
authoritativeness of the word of the Veda. The permanent 
identity of names and forms is declared in ^ruti as well as 
Sm?vti ; compare, for instance, S&mh. X, 190, 3, ‘As 
formerly the creator ordered sun and moon, and the sky, 
and the air, and the heavenly world ; ’ which passage means 
that the highest Lord arranged at the beginning of the 
present kalpa the entire world with sun and moon, and so 
on, just as it had been arranged in the preceding kalpa. 
Compare also Taitt. Brahm. Ill, i, 4, i, ‘ Agni desired: 
May I become the consumer of the food of the gods ; for 
that end he olfered a cake on eight potsherds to Agni and 
the KWttikds.’ This passage, which forms part of the 
injunction of the ish/i to the Nakshatras, declares equality of 
name and form connecting the Agni who offered and the 
Agni to whom he offered 

Smrfti also contains similar statements to be quoted 
here; so, for instance, ‘Whatever were the names of the 
rfshis and their powers to see the Vedas, the same the 
Unborn one again gives to them when they are produced 
afresh at the end of the night (the mahapralaya). As the 
various signs of the seasons return in succession in their due 
time, thus the same beings again appear in the different 
yugas. And of whatever individuality the gods of the 


^ Asmin kalpe sarveshSm prawlnam dahapakaprak^j-akaii yo 
xyam agnir drAyate so^yam agni^ pflrvasmin kalpe manushyay^ 
san devatvapadaprapakawz karmanush/Myasmin kalpa eta^ ^-anma 
labdhavdn ata/z purvasmin. kalpe sa manushyo bh 4 vini?» s?^mgn^xa 
a^r Ay agnir iti vyapadhyate. — Sdyawa on the quoted passage. 




VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


216 


past ages were, equal to them are the present gods in 
name and form,’ 

31. On account of the impossibility of (the gods 
being qualified) for the madhu-vidya, Slc. (S'aimini 
(maintains) the non-qualification (of the gods for 
the Brahma-vidyd,). 

A new objection is raised against the averment that the 
gods, &c. also are entitled to the knowledge of Brahman. 
The teacher, (Paimini, considers the gods and similar beings 
not to have any claim. — Why ? — On account of the impos- 
sibility, in the case of the so-called Madhu-vidyi, &c. It 
their claim to the knowledge of Brahman were admitted, 
we should have to admit their claim to the madhu-vidya (‘ the 
knowledge of the honey ’) also, because that also is a kind 
of knowledge not different (from the knowledge of Brahman). 
But to admit this latter claim is not possible ; for, according 
to the passage, ‘ The Sun is indeed the honey of the devas ’ 
(Kk. Up. Ill, I, i), men are to meditate on the sun (the 
god Aditya) under the form of honey, and how, if the gods 
themselves are admitted as meditating worshippers, can 
Aditya meditate upon another Aditya? — Again, the text, 
after having enumerated five kinds of nectar, the red one, 
&c. residing in the sun, and after having stated that the five 
classes of gods, viz. the Vasus, Rudras, Adityas, Maruts, and 
Sadhyas, live on one of these nectars each, declares that ‘ he 
who thus knows this nectar becomes one of the Vasus, with 
Agni at their head, he sees the nectar and rejoices, &c., and 
indicates thereby that those who know the nectars enjoyed 
by the Vasus, 8z:c., attain the greatness of the Vasus, &c. 
But how should the Vasus themselves know other Vasus 
enjoying the nectar, and what other Vasu-greatness should 
they desire to attain ? — We have also to compare the pas- 
sages ‘ Agni is one foot, Aditya is one foot, the quarters are 
one foot’ {KA. Up. Ill, 18, a ) ; ‘ Air is indeed the absorber’ 
{Kk. Up. IV, 3,1); ‘ Aditya is Brahman, this is the doctrine.’ 
All these passages treat of the meditation on the Self of 
certain divinities, for which meditation these divinities them- 




I ADIIYAYA, 3 pAdA, 32. 


217 


selves are not qualified. — So it is likewise impossible that the 
;7shis themselves should be qualified for meditations con- 
nected with ?'2shis, such as expressed in passages like Brf. 
Up, II, 2, 4, ‘ These two are the rfshis Gautama and Bharad- 
vfi^a ; the right Gautama, the left Bharadv%*a.’ — Another 
reason for the non-qualification of the gods is stated in the 
following Sutra. 

32. And (the devas, &c. are not qualified) on 
account of (the words denoting the devas, &c.) being 
(used) in the sense of (sphere of) light. 

To that sphere of light, the purvapakshin resumes, which 
is stationed in the sky, and during its diurnal revolutions 
illumines the world, terms such as Aditya, i. e. the names of 
devas, are applied, as we know from the use of ordinary 
language, and from Vedic complementary passages^. But 
of a mere sphere of light we cannot understand how it should 
be endowed with either a bodily form, consisting of the heart 
and the like, or intelligence, or the capability of forming 
wishes For mere light we know to be, like earth, entirely 
devoid of intelligence. The same observation applies to 
Agni (fire), and so on. It will perhaps be said that our 
objection is not valid, because the personality of the devas 
is known from the mantras, arthavfidas, itihfisas, purai^as, 
and from the conceptions of ordinary life ^ ; but we contest 
the relevancy of this remark. For the conceptions of ordi- 
nary life do not constitute an independent means of know- 
ledge ; we rather say that a thing is known from ordinary 
life if it is known by the (acknowledged) means of know- 
ledge, perception, &c. But none of the recognised means 
of knowledge, such as perception and the like, apply to the 

^ As, for instance, ' So long as Aditya rises in the east and sets 
in the west ' {Kh. Up. Ill, 6,4). 

^ Whence it follows that the devas are not personal beings, and 
therefore not qualified for the knowledge of Brahman. 

® Yama, for instance, being ordinarily represented as a person 
with a staff in his hand, Varu7/a with a noose, Indra with a thunder- 
bolt, &c. &c. 



2I8 


VEDANTA-S^TRAS. 


matter under discussion. Itihisas and purd/^as again being 
of human origin, stand themselves in need of other means 
of knowledge on which to base. The arthavada passages 
also, which, as forming syntactical wholes with the injunctory 
passages, have merely the purpose of glorifying (what is 
enjoined in the latter), cannot be considered to constitute 
by themselves reasons for the existence of the personality, 
&c. of the devas. The mantras again, which, on the ground 
of direct enunciation, &c., are to be employed (at the dif- 
ferent stages of the sacrificial action), have merely the 
purpose of denoting things connected with the sacrificial 
performance, and do not constitute an independent means 
of authoritative knowledge for anything^. — For these reasons 
the devas, and similar beings, are not qualified for the 
knowledge of Brahman. 

33. Badardya?^a, on the other hand, (maintains) 
the existence (of qualification for Brahma-vidya on 
the part of the gods) ; for there are (passages 
indicatory of that). 

The expression ‘on the other hand/ is meant to rebut 
the purvapaksha. The teacher, Bidaraya/ija, maintains the 
existence of the qualification on the part of the gods, &c. 
For, although the qualification of the gods cannot be ad- 
mitted with reference to the mhdhu-vidyi, and similar topics 
of knowledge, in which the gods themselves are implicated, 
still they may be qualified for the pure knowledge of Brah- 
man, qualification in general depending'on the presence of 
desire, capability, &c.^ Nor does the impossibility of quali- 
fication in certain cases interfere with the presence of qualifi- 
cation in those other cases where it is not impossible. To the 
case of the gods the same reasoning applies as to the case of 
men ; for among men also, all are not qualified for everything, 
Brahmawas, for instance, not for the ri^suya-sacrifice 

^ On the proper function of arthavada and mantra according to 
the MfmaOTS^, cp. ArthasaOTgraha, Introduction. 

® See above, p. 197. 

^ Which can be offered by kshattriyas only. 


r ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 33. 


219 


And, with reference to the knowledge of Brahman, Scrip- 
ture, moreover, contains express hints notifying that the 
devas are qualified ; compare, for instance, Bn*. Up. 1 , 4, 10, 
‘ Whatever Deva was awakened (so as to know Brahman) 
he indeed became that ; and the same with r/shis \ Kh. 
Up. VIII, 7, 2, ‘They said: Well, let us search for that 
Self by which, if one has searched it out, all worlds and all 
desires are obtained. Thus saying, Indra went forth from 
the Devas, Viro>^ana from the Asuras.’ Similar statements 
are met with in Smn'ti, so, for instance, in the colloquy of the 
Gandharva and Ya^^avalkya''-. — Against the objection raised 
in the preceding Sutra (33) we argue as follows. Words 
like aditya, and so on, which denote devas, although having 
reference to light and the like, yet convey the idea of 
certain divine Selfs (persons) endowed with intelligence and 
pre-eminent power; for they are used in that sense in 
mantras and artbavada passages. For the devas possess, 
in consequence of their pre-eminent power, the capability of 
residing within the light, and so on, and to assume any form 
they like. Thus we read in Scripture, in the arthavada 
passage explaining the words ‘ram of Medhatithi,’ which 
form part of the Subrahma^ya-formula, that ‘ Indra, having 
assumed the shape of a ram, carried off Medhdtithi, the 
descendant of Kaf^va. ’ (Sha^/v. Br. I, i). And thus Smr/ti 
says that ‘ Aditya, having assumed the shape of a man, came 
to Kuntt.' Moreover, even in such substances as earth, in- 
telligent ruling beings must be admitted to reside, for that 
appears from such scriptiu'al passages as ‘ the earth spoke,’ 
‘the waters spoke,’ &c. The non-intelligence of light and 
the like, in so far as they are mere material elements, is 
admitted in the case of the sun (dditya), &c. also ; but — as 
already remarked — from the use of the words in mantras and 


^ SrautaUngeninumanahMham darsayitvi smartenapi tadbadhazw 
darjayati smartam iti. Kim atra brahma ammtam kirn svid 
vedyam anuttamam, X’intayet tatra vai gatv^ gandharvo mam 
apn',^.^;^ata, Vi^vS.vasus tato ra^an vedtnta^;2anakovida iti moksha- 
dharme ^anakay^^wavalkyasa?/zvSddt prahiad%-agarasa?;wada-?! Z’ok- 
tanum^n^siddhir ity artha/z. 


220 


vedanta-sOtras. 


arthavadas it appears that there are intelligent beings of 
divine nature (which animate those material elements). 

We now turn to the objection (raised above by the pur- 
vapakshin) that mantras and arthavadas, as merely sub- 
serving other purposes, have no power of setting forth the 
personality of the devas, and remark that not the cir- 
cumstance of subordination or non-subordination to some 
other purpose, but rather the presence or absence of a 
certain idea furnishes a reason for (our assuming) the 
existence of something. This is exemplified by the case 
of a person who, having set out for some other purpose, 
(nevertheless) forms the conviction of the existence of leaves, 
grass, and the like, which he sees lying on the road. — But, 
the pLirvapakshin may here object, the instance quoted by 
you is not strictly analogous. In the case of the wanderer, 
perception, whose objects the grass and leaves are, is active, 
and through it he forms the conception of their existence. 
In the case of an arthavada, on the other hand, which, as 
forming a syntactical unity with the corresponding injunctory 
passage, merely subserves the purpose of glorifying (the 
latter), it is impossible to determine any energy having a 
special object of its own. For in general any minor syntac- 
tical unity, which is included in a more comprehensive 
syntactical unity conveying a certain meaning, does not 
possess the power of expressing a separate meaning of its 
own. Thus, for instance, we derive, from the combination 
of the three words constituting the negative sentence, ‘ (Do) 
not drink wine,’ one meaning only, i. e. a prohibition of 
drinking wine, and do not derive an additional meaning, 
viz. an order to drink wine, from the combination of the last 
two words, ‘ drink wine.’ — To this objection we reply, that 
the instance last quoted is not analogous (to the matter 
under discussion). The words of the sentence prohibiting 
the drinking of wine form only one whole, and on that 
account the separate sense which any minor syntactical unity 
included in the bigger sentence may possess cannot be 
accepted. In the case of injunction and arthavdda, on the 
‘other hand, the words constituting the arthavdda form a 
separate group of their own which refers to some accom- 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 33. 


221 


plished thing and only subsequently to that, when it comes 
to be considered what purpose they subserve, they enter on 
the function of glorifying the injunction. Let us examine, 
as an illustrative example, the injunctive passage, ‘ He who 
is desirous of prosperity is to offer to Vayu a white animal/ 
All the words contained in this passage are directly con- 
nected with the injunction. This is, however, not the case 
with the words constituting the corresponding arthavdda 
passage, ‘ For Vdyu is the swiftest deity ; Vayu he ap- 
proaches with his own share ; he leads him to prosperity.’ 
The single words of this arthavdda are not grammatically 
connected with the single words of the injunction, but form 
a subordinate unity of their own, which contains the praise 
of Vayu, and glorify the injunction, only in so far as they 
give us to understand that the action enjoined is connected 
with a distinguished divinity. If the matter conveyed by the 
subordinate (arthavdda) passage can be known by some other 
means of knowledge, the arthavida acts as a mere anuvdda, 
i. e. a statement referring to something (already known) 
When its contents are contradicted by other means of 
knowledge it acts as a so-called giu^avida, i. e. a statement 
of a quality^. Where, again, neither of the two mentioned 
conditions is found, a doubt may arise whether the arthavida 
is to be taken as a gu?^avida on account of the absence of 
other means of knowledge, or as an arthavida referring to 
something known (i. e. an anuvdda) on account of the ab- 
sence of contradiction by other means of proof. The latter 
alternative is, however, to be embraced by reflecting people. 
— The same reasoning applies to mantras also. 

There is a further reason for assuming the personality of 
the gods. The Vedic injunctions, as enjoining sacrificial 
offerings to Indra and the other gods, presuppose certain 
characteristic shapes of the individual divinities, because 

As opposed to an action to be accomplished. 

^ Of this nature is, for instance, the arthavdda, ‘ Fire is a remedy 
for cold.’ 

® Of this nature is, for instance, the passage ‘ the sacrificial post 
is the sun’ (i.e. possesses the qualities of the sun, luminousness, 
&c. ; a statement contradicted by perception). 



222 


vedanta-sOtras. 


without such the sacrificer could not represent Indra and 
the other gods to his mind. And if the divinity were not 
represented to the mind it would not be possible to make 
an offering to it. So Scripture also says, ‘ Of that divinity 
for which the offering is taken he is to think when about to 
say vausha/’ (Ai. Br. Ill, 8, i). Nor is it possible to con- 
sider the essential form (or character) of a thing to consist 
in the word only ^ ; for word (denoting) and thing (denoted) 
are different. He therefore who admits the authorita- 
tiveness of the scriptural word has no right to deny 
that the shape of Indra, and the other gods, is such as we 
understand it to be from the mantras and arthavidas. — 
Moreover, itih&sas and pura^as also — because based on 
mantra and arthavida which possess authoritative power in 
the manner described — are capable of setting forth the per- 
sonality, &c. of the devas. Itihasa and piira^^a can, besides, 
be considered as based on perception also. For what is 
not accessible to our perception may have been within the 
sphere of perception of people in ancient times. Smnti 
also declares that Vyisa and others conversed with the gods 
face to face. A person maintaining that the people of 
ancient times were no more able to converse with the gods 
than people are at present, would thereby deny the (incon- 
testable) variety of the world. He might as well maintain 
that because there is at present no prince ruling over the 
whole earth, there were no such princes in former times ; 
a position by which the scriptural injunction of the r^^asuya- 
sacrifice ^ would be stultified. Or he might maintain that 
in former times the spheres of duty of -the different castes 
and arramas were as generally unsettled as they are now, 
and, on that account, declare those parts of Scripture which 
define those different duties to be purposeless. It is there- 
fore altogether unobjectionable to assunie that the men of 
ancient times, in consequence of their eminent religious 


^ And therefore to suppose that a divinity is nothing but a 
certain word forming part of a mantra. 

^ The ra^asfiya-sacrifice is to be offered by a prince who wishes 
to become the ruler of the whole earth. 



I ADIIYAYA, 3 PADA, 34. 


223 


merit, conversed with the gods face to face. Smrfti also 
declares that ‘from the reading of the Veda there results 
intercourse with the favourite divinity’ (Yoga Sutra II, 44). 
And that Yoga does, as Smr/ti declares, lead to the 
acquirement of extraordinary powers, such as subtlety of 
body, and so on, is a fact which cannot be set aside by a 
mere arbitrary denial. Scripture also proclaims the great- 
ness of Yoga, ‘ When, as earth, water, light, heat, and ether 
arise, the fivefold quality of Yoga takes place, then there is 
no longer illness, old age, or pain for him who has obtained 
a body produced by the fire of Yoga’ (S’vet. Up. II, 13). 
Nor have we the right to measure by our capabilities the 
capability of the r/shis who see the mantras and brahma;^a 
passages (i. e. the Veda). — From all this it appears that the 
itihasas and purdwas have an adequate basis.— And the 
conceptions of ordinary life also must not be declared to 
be unfounded, if it is at all possible to accept them. 

The general result is that we have the right to conceive 
the gods as possessing personal existence, on the ground 
of mantras, arthavadas, itihasas, pura;/as, and ordinarily 
prevailing ideas. And as the gods may thus be in the con- 
dition of having desires and so on, they must be considered 
as qualified for the knowledge of Brahman. Moreover, 
the declarations which Scripture makes concerning gradual 
emancipation ^ agree with this latter supposition only. 

34. Grief of him (i. e. of U^^naiTuti) (arose) on 
account of his hearing a disrespectful speech about 
himself ; on account of the rushing on of that (grief) 
(Raikva called him Viidra) ; for it (the grief) is 
pointed at (by Raikva). 

(In the preceding adhikarawa) the exclusiveness of the 
claim of men to knowledge has been refuted, and it has 
been declared that the gods, &c. also possess such a claim. 
The present adhikara;'?a is entered on for the purpose of 
removing the doubt whether, as the exclusiveness of the 

^ In one of whose stages the being desirous of final emancipation 
becomes a deva. 


224 


vedAnta-sutras. 


claim of twice-born men is capable of refutation, the 
5udras also possess such a claim - 

The purvapakshin maintains that the 5udras also have 
such a claim, because they may be in the position of 
desiring that knowledge, and because they are capable of 
it ; and because there is no scriptural prohibition (ex- 
cluding them from knowledge) analogous to the text, 
‘Therefore^ the 5udra is unfit for sacrificing’ (Taitt. SawA. 
VII, I, I, 6 ). The reason, moreover, which disqualifies the 
^udras for sacrificial works, viz. their being without the 
sacred fires, does not invalidate their qualification for know- 
ledge, as knowledge can be apprehended by those also who 
are without the fires. There is besides an inferential mark 
supporting the claim of the 5udras ; for in the so-called 
-sa^^varga-knowledge he (Raikva) refers to Cana.rruti 
Pautraya^a, who wishes to learn from him, by the name 
of ^udra ‘ Fie, necklace and carriage be thine, O 5udra, 
together with the cows’ {Klu Up. IV, 3, 3 ). Smnti 
moreover speaks of Vidura and others who were born from 
6 'fidra mothers as possessing eminent knowledge. — Hence 
the vSiidra has a claim to the knowledge of Brahman. 

To this we reply that the .Sudras have no such claim, 
on account of their not studying the Veda. A person 
who has studied the Veda and understood its sense is 
indeed qualified for Vedic matters ; but a Al'udra does not 
study the Veda, for such study demands as its antecedent 
the upanayana-ceremony, and that ceremony belongs to 
the three (higher) castes only. The mere circumstance 
of being in a condition of desire does not furnish a 
reason for qualification, if capability is absent. Mere 
temporal capability again does not constitute a reason 
for qualification, spiritual capability being required in 
spiritual matters. And spiritual capability is (in the case 
of the 6 'udras) excluded by their being excluded from 
the study of the Veda. — The Vedic statement, moreover, 
that the ^udra is unfit for sacrifices intimates, because 

^ The commenlaries explain ‘ therefore ’ by ‘ on account of his 
being devoid of the three sacred fires.’ This explanation does not, 
however, agree with the context of the Taitt. Sawh. 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 34. 


225 


founded on reasoning, that he is unfit for knowledge also ; 
for the argumentation is the same in both cases — With 
reference to the purvapakshin’s opinion that the fact of the 
word ‘ 6 'udra ’ being enounced in the sa/z^varga-knowledge 
constitutes an inferential mark (of the vShdra’s qualifica- 
tion for knowledge), we remark that that inferential mark 
has no force, on account of the absence of arguments. For 
the statement of an inferential mark possesses the power 
of intimation only in consequence of arguments being 
adduced ; but no such arguments are brought forward in 
the passage quoted Besides, the word ‘ vSiidra ’ which 
occurs in the sa 7 ^^varga-vidya would establish a claim on the 
part of the .Sudras to that one vidya only, not to all vidyas. 
In reality, however, it is powerless, because occurring in an 
arthavida, to establish the ^udras’ claim to anything. — The 
word ‘ 5udra ’ can moreover be made to agree with the con- 
text in which it occurs in the following manner. When 
CS-nai-ruti Pautriya//a heard himself spoken of with dis- 
respect by the flamingo (‘ How can you speak of him, being 
what he is, as if he were like Raikva with the car ? ’ IV, i, 3 ), 
grief (su^) arose in his mind, and to that grief the ;^fshi Raikva 
alludes with the word 5udra, in order to show thereby his 
knowledge of what is remote. This explanation must be ac- 
cepted because a (real) born 5l!idra is not qualified (for the 
sawvarga-vidya). If it be asked how the grief {snk) which 
had arisen in (Janaj-ruti’s mind can be referred to by means 
of the word 5udra, we reply : On account of the rushing 
on (adravawa) of the grief. For we may etymologise the 
word 6 'udra by dividing it into its parts, either as ‘ he rushed 
into griefs (5'u/^am abhidudrdva) or as 'grief rushed on 

’ The .Siadra not having acquired a knowledge of Vedic matters 
in the legitimate way, i. e. through the study of the Veda under the 
guidance of a guru, is unfit for sacrifices as well as for vidya. 

® The lihga contained in the word ‘-S'fidra’ has no proving 
power as it occurs in an arthavada-passage wh’ch has no authority 
‘if not connected with a corresponding injunctive passage. In our 
case the linga in the arthavada-passage is even directly conti'adicted 
by those injunctions which militate against the iSudras’ qualification 
for Vedic matters. 

C34] 


Q 




226 


vedanta-s6tras. 


him/ or as ‘ he in his grief rushed to Raikva ; ’ while on 
the other hand it is impossible to accept the word in its 
ordinary conventional sense. The circumstance (of the 
king actually being grieved) is moreover expressly touched 
upon in the legend k 

35. And because the kshattriyalioocl (of 6^anaiTuti) 
is understood from the inferential mark (supplied by 
his being mentioned) later on with ATaitraratlia (who 
was a kshattriya himself). 

(^dna.yruti cannot have been a 5 udra by birth for that 
reason also that his being a kshattriya is understood from 
an inferential sign, viz. his being mentioned together (in one 
chapter) with the kshattriya iTaitraratha Abhipratarin. For, 
later on, i. e. in the passage complementary to the sawvarga- 
vidyd, a kshattriya .^aitrarathi Abhipratarin is glorified, 

‘ Once while 5 aunaka K^peya and Abhipratarin Kakshaseni 
were being waited on at their meal a religious student begged 
of them ’ {Kh. Up. IV, 3, 5). That this Abhipratarin was a 
^aitrarathi (i. e. a descendant of iTitraratha) we have to 
infer from his connexion with a Kapeya. For we know 
(from ^ruti) about the connexion of /fitraratha himself with 
the Kapeyas (‘the Kapeyas made j^itraratha perform that 
sacrifice Tkndyz. Br. XX, 12, 5), and as a rule sacrificers 
of one and the same family employ officiating priests of 
one and the same family. Moreover, as we understand 
from Scripture (‘ from him a iTaitrarathi descended who was 
a prince^’) that he (.^aitraratha) was a prince, we must 


^ Hawzsavakyad atmano^nadaraw jrutva ^anajrute/z mg ut- 
pannety etad eva kathaw gamyate yenasau judra.rabdena su/^yate 
tatiiha spmyate Ananda Giri. 

^ I translate this passage as I find it in all MSS. of S’ankara 
consulted by me (noting, however, that some MSS. read .^aitrarathi- 
nfimaika/z). Ananda Giii expressly explains tasm^d by /liitrarathad 
ity artha,^. — The text of the Ta«(/ya Br. runs : tasmfi/^ y^aitrarathinfim 
eka^ kshatrapatir gayate, and the commentary explains ; tasmdt 
karawad adyS,pi /^itravamotpannfinaTzz madhye eka eva r%a kshatra- 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 36. 


227 


understand him to have been a kshattriya. The fact now 
of Gkr\2ismti being praised in the same vidyd with the 
kshattriya Abhipratarin intimates that the former also was 
a kshattriya. For as a rule equals are mentioned together 
with equals. That ( 9 anajruti was a kshattriya we more- 
over conclude from his sending his door-keeper and from 
other similar signs of power (mentioned in the text). — 
Hence the 5 udras are not qualified (for the knowledge of 
Brahman). 

36. On account of the reference to ceremonial 
purifications (in the case of the higher castes) and 
on account of their absence being declared (in the 
case of the A'udras). 

That the d'udras are not qualified, follows from that 
circumstance also that in different places of the vidyas such 
ceremonies as the upanayana and the like are referred to. 
Compare, for instance, d’at. Br. XI, 5, 3, 13, ^He initiated 
him as a pupil;’ Kh. Up. VII, i, i, ‘Teach me, Sir! thus 
he approached him;’ Pra. Up. I, i, ‘Devoted to Brahman, 
firm in Brahman, seeking for the highest Brahman they, 
carrying fuel in their hands, approached the venerable 
Pippalada, thinking that he would teach them all that.’ — 
Thus the following passage also, ‘ He without having made 
them undergo the upanayana (said) to them ’ {Kk. Up. V, 
II, 7), shows that the upanayana is a well-established cere- 
mony — With reference to the 5 udras, on the other hand, 
the absence of ceremonies is frequently mentioned ; so, 
for instance, Manu X, 4, where they are spoken of as ‘ once 
born ’ only (‘ the .Sudra is the fourth caste, once-born ’), and 
Manu X, 136, ‘In the d'udra there is not any sin, and 
he is not fit for any ceremony.’ 

patir baladhipatir bhavati. — Grammar does not authorise the form 
/^ailraratha used in the Sutra. 

^ The king Ajtvapati receives some Brahma;?as as his pupils 
without insisting on the upanayana. This express statement of the 
upanayana having been omitted in a certain case shows it to be the 
general rule. 

Q 2 




228 


VEDANTA-S^iTRAS. 


37. And on account of (Gautama) proceeding (to 
initiate G^abala) on the ascertainment of (his) not 
being that (i. e. a KSCidra). 

The 6’udras are not qualified for that reason also that 
Gautama, having ascertained Gabala not to be a Gudra 
from his speaking the truth, proceeded to initiate and 
instruct him. ‘None who is not a Brihma^^a would thus 
speak out. Go and fetch fuel, friend, I shall initiate you. 
You have not swerved from the truth’ {KJi. Up. IV, 4, 5) ; 
which scriptural passage furnishes an inferential sign (of 
the Gudras not being capable of initiation). 

38. And on account of the prohibition, in SmrAi, 
of (the Audras’) hearing and studying (the V eda) and 
(knowing and performing) (Vedic) matters. 

The vSudras are not qualified for that reason also that 
Smrfti prohibits their hearing the Veda, their studying the 
Veda, and their understanding and performing Vedic matters. 
The prohibition of hearing the Veda is conveyed by the 
following passages: ‘The ears of him who hears the Veda 
are to be filled with (molten) lead and lac,’ and ‘ For a 
Gudra is (like) a cemetery, therefore (the Veda) is not to be 
read in the vicinity of a Nudra.’ From this latter passage 
the prohibition of studying the Veda results at once; for 
how should he study Scripture in whose vicinity it is not 
even to be read ? There is, moreover, an express prohibition 
(of the Gudras studying the Veda). ‘His tongue is to be 
slit if he pronounces it ; his body is to be cut through if he 
preserves it.’ The prohibitions of hearing and studying 
the Veda already imply the prohibition of the knowledge 
and performance of Vedic matters; there are, however, 
express prohibitions also, such as ‘he is not to impart 
knowledge to the Gudra,’ and ‘to the twice-born belong 
study, sacrifice, and the bestowal of gifts.’ — From those 
vSudras, however, who, like Vidura and ‘ the religious hunter,’ 
acquire knowledge in consequence of the after effects of 
former deeds, the fruit of their knowledge cannot be with- 



I ADHYAya, 3 PADA, 39. 


229 


held, since knowledge in all cases brings about its fruit, 
Smriti, moreover, declares that all the four castes are 
qualified for acquiring the knowledge of the itihdsas and 
pura; 2 as ; compare the passage, ‘ He is to teach the four 
castes ’ (Mahabh.). — It remains, however, a settled point that 
they do not possess any such qualification with regard to the 
Veda. 


39. (The is Brahman), on account of the 

trembling (predicated of the whole world). 

The discussion of qualification for Brahma-knowledge — 
on which we entered as an opportunity offered — being 
finished we return to our chief topic, i. e. the enquiry into 
the purport of the VedAnta-texts. — We read (Ka. Up. II, 
6, 3 ), ‘ Whatever there is, the whole world when gone forth 
trembles in the pra/^a. It (the prA«a) is a great terror, a 
raised thunderbolt. Those who know it become immortal h" 
— This passage declares that this whole world trembles, 
abiding in pra72a, and that there is raised something very 
terrible, called a thunderbolt, and that through its knowledge 
immortality is obtained. But as it is not immediately clear 
what the pra;za is, and what that terrible thunderbolt, a 
discussion arises. 

The purvapakshin maintains that, in accordance with the 
ordinary meaning of the terra, prfiwa denotes the air with 
its five modifications, that the word ‘ thunderbolt ’ also is to 
be taken in its ordinary sense, and that thus the whole 
passage contains a glorification of air. For, he says, this 
whole world trembles, abiding within air with its five forms 
— which is here called pra77a — and the terrible thunderbolts 
also spring from air (or wind) as their cause. For in the 
air, people say, when it manifests itself in the form of 
Par^anya, lightning, thunder, rain, and thunderbolts manifest 
themselves. — Through the knowledge of that air immortality 


^ As the words stand in the original they might be translated 
as follows (and are so translated by the purvapakshin), ‘ Whatever 
there is, the whole world trembles in the pra7za, there goes forth 
(from it) a great terror, viz. the raised thunderbolt.’ 



vedAmta-sOtras. 


230 


also can be obtained ; for another scriptural passage says, 

‘ Air is everything by itself, and air is all things together. 
He who knows this conquers death,’ — We therefore con- 
clude that the same air is to be understood in the passage 
under discussion. 

To this we make the following reply. — Brahman only can 
be meant, on account of what precedes as well as what 
follows. In the preceding as well as the subsequent part 
of the chapter Brahman only is spoken of; how then can it 
be supposed that in the intermediate part all at once the 
air should be referred to? The immediately preceding 
passage runs as follows, ‘ That only is called the Bright, that 
is called Brahman, that alone is called the Immortal. All 
worlds are contained in it, and no one goes beyond it.’ 
That the Brahman there spoken of forms the topic of our 
passage also, we conclude, firstly, from proximity ; and, 
secondly, from the circumstance that in the clause, ‘The 
whole world trembles in pra;za,’ we recognise a quality of 
Brahman, viz. its constituting the abode of the whole world. 
That the word prd«a can denote the highest Self also, 
appears from such passages as ‘the pra;za of pr^zza’ (Bz-'z. 
Up. IV, 4, 18). Being the cause of trembling, moreover, 
is a quality which properly appertains to the highest Self 
only, not to mere air. Thus Scripture says, ‘ No mortal 
lives by the prdzza and the breath that goes down. We 
live by another in whom these two repose ’ (Ka. Up. II, 5 > 
5). And also in the passage subsequent to the one under 
discussion, (‘ From terror of it fire burns, from terror the 
sun burns, from terror Indra and Viyu, and Death as the 
fifth run away,’) Brahman, and not the air, must be sup- 
posed to be spoken of, since the subject of that passage is 
represented as the cause of fear on the part of the whole 
world inclusive of the air itself. Thence we again conclude 
that the passage under discussion also refers to Brahman, 
firstly, on the ground of proximity ; and, secondly, because 
we recognise a quality of Brahman, viz. its being the cause 
of fear, in the words, ‘A great terror, a. raised thunderbolt.’ 
The word ‘ thunderbolt ’ is here used to denote a cause of 
fear in general. Thus in ordinary life also a man strictly 



I ADHYAYA, 3 PADA, 40. 


231 


carries out a king’s command because he fearfully considers 
in his mind, ‘ A thunderbolt (i. e. the king’s wrath, or 
threatened punishment) is hanging over my head ; it might 
fall if I did not carry out his command.’ In the same 
manner this whole world inclusive of fire, air, sun, and so 
on, regularly carries on its manifold functions from fear of 
Brahman ; hence Brahman as inspiring fear is compared to 
a thunderbolt. Similarly, another scriptural passage, whose 
topic is Brahman, declares, ' From terror of it the wind 
blows, from terror the sun rises ; from terror of it Agni and 
Indra, yea, Death runs as the fifth.' — That Brahman is what 
is referred to in our passage, further follows from the declara- 
tion that the fruit of its cognition is immortality. For that 
immortality is the fruit of the knowledge of Brahman is 
known, for instance, from the mantra, ‘ A man who knows 
him only passes over death, there is no other path to go ’ 
(6’vet. Up. VI, 15). — That immortality which the phrva- 
pakshin asserts to be sometimes represented as the fruit of 
the knowledge of the air is a merely relative one ; for there 
(i. e. in the chapter from which the passage is quoted) at first 
the highest Self is spoken of, by means of a new topic 
being started (Br?. Up. Ill, 4), and thereupon the inferior 
nature of the air and so on is referred to. (‘Everything 
else is evil.’) — That in the passage under discussion the 
highest Self is meant appears finally from the general subject- 
matter; for the question (asked by Na/&iketas in I, a, 14, 
‘ That which thou seest as neither this nor that, as neither 
effect nor cause, as neither past nor future tell me that’) 
refers to the highest Self. 

40. The light (is Brahman), on account of that 
(Brahman) being seen (in the scriptural passage). 

We read in Scripture, ‘Thus does that serene being, 
arising from this body, appear in its own form as soon as it 
has approached the highest light’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 12, 3). 
Here the doubt arises whether the word ‘ light ’ denotes the 
(physical) light, which is the object of sight and dispels dark- 
ness, or the highest Brahman. 


232 


vedanta-sOtkas. 


The purvapakshin maintains that the word ‘ light ’ denotes 
the well-known (physical) light, because that is the conven- 
tional sense of the world. For while it is to be admitted 
that in another passage, discussed under I, i, 34, the word 
‘ light ' does, owing to the general topic of the chapter, divest 
itself of its ordinary meaning and denote Brahman, there 
is in our passage no similar reason for setting the ordinary 
meaning aside. Moreover, it is stated in the chapter 
treating of the nd^fis of the body, that a man going to final 
release reaches the sun (‘ When he departs from this body 
then he departs upwards by those very rays ; ’ W/^. Up. VIII, 
6, 5). Hence we conclude that the word ‘ light ’ denotes, 
in our passage, the ordinary light. 

To this we make the following reply. — The word ‘ light ’ 
can denote the highest Brahman only, on account of that 
being seen. We see that in the whole chapter Brahman is 
carried on as the topic of discussion. For the Self, which 
is free from sin, &c. is introduced as the general subject- 
matter in VIII, 7, I (‘the Self which is free from sin ’) ; it is 
thereupon set forth as that which is to be searched out and 
to be understood (VIII, 7, i) ; it is carried on by means of 
the clauses, ‘ I shall explain that further to you ’ (VIII, 9, 
3 ff.) ; after that freedom from body is said to belong to it, 
because it is one with light (‘ when he is free from the body 
then neither pleasure nor pain touches him,’ VIII, 13, i) — ' 
and freedom from body is not possible outside Brahman — 
and it is finally qualified as ‘ the highest light, the highest 
person’ (VIII, I 3 , 3). — Against the statement, made by the 
pfirvapakshin, that Scripture speaks of a man going to re- 
lease as reaching the sun, we remark that the release there 
referred to is not the ultimate one, since it is said to be con- 
nected with going and departing upwards. That the ulti- 
mate release has nothing to do with going and departing 
upwards we shall show later on. 

41. The ether is (Brahman), as it is designated as 
something different, &c. (from name and form). 

Scripture says, ‘ He who is called ether (aki^a) is the 
revealer of all forms and names. That within which these 



I ADIIYAyA, 3 PADA, 42. 233 


forms and names are contained is the Brahman, the Immor- 
tal, the Self’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 14, i). 

There arising a doubt whether that which here is called 
ether is the highest Brahman or the ordinary elemental 
ether, the purvapakshin declares that the latter alternative 
is to be embraced, firstly, because it is founded on the con- 
ventional meaning of theword ‘ ether;’ and, secondly, because 
the circumstance of revealing names and forms can very well 
be reconciled with the elemental ether, as that which affords 
room (for all things). Moreover, the passage contains no 
clear indicatory mark of Brahman, such as creative power, 
and the like. 

To this we reply, that the word ‘ether’ can here denote 
the highest Brahman only, because it is designated as a 
different thing, &c. For the clause, ‘That within which 
these two are contained is Brahman,’ designates the ether 
as something different from names and forms. But, 
excepting Brahman, there is nothing whatever different 
from name and form, since the entire world of effects is 
evolved exclusively by names and forms. Moreover, the 
complete revealing of names and forms cannot be accom- 
plished by anything else but Brahman, according to the 
text which declares Brahman’s creative agency, ‘ Let me 
enter (into those beings) with this living Self (^iva atman), 
and evolve names and forms’ {Kh. Up. VI, 3, 2), But — it 
may be said — from this very passage it is apparent that the 
living Self also (i. e. the individual soul) possesses revealing 
power with regard to names and forms. — True, w'e reply, 
but what the passage really wishes to intimate, is the non- 
difference (of the individual soul from the highest Self). 
And the very statement concerning the revealing of names 
and forms implies the statement of signs indicatory of 
Brahman, viz, creative power and the like. — Moreover, 
the terms ‘ the Brahman, the Immortal, the Self’ (VIII, 14) 
indicate that Brahman is spoken of. 

42. And (on account of the designation) (of the 
highest Self) as different (from the individual soul) 
in the states of deep sleep and departing. 



234 


vedanta-sOtras. 


In the sixth prapa^'/zaka of the Br/hadara^zyaka there 
is given, in reply to the question, ‘Who is that Self?’ a 
lengthy exposition of the nature of the Self, ‘ He who is 
within the heart, among the pra;2as, the person of light, 
consisting of knowledge’ (Bri. Up. IV, 3, 7). Here the 
doubt arises, whether the passage merely aims at making 
an additional statement about the nature of the transmi- 
grating soul (known already from other sources), or at 
establishing the nature of the non-transmigrating Self. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the passage is concerned 
with the nature of the transmigrating soul, on account of 
the introductory and concluding statements. For the intro- 
ductory statement, ‘ He among the pr^7?as who consists of 
knowledge,’ contains marks indicatory of the embodied 
soul, and so likewise the concluding passage, ‘And that 
great unborn Self is he who consists of cognition,’ &c. 
(IV, 4, %%). We must therefore adhere to the same subject- 
matter in the intermediate passages also, and look on them 
as setting forth the same embodied Self, represented in 
its different states, viz. the waking state, and so on. 

In reply to this, we maintain that the passage aims only 
at giving information about the highest Lord, not at making 
additional statements about the embodied soul. — Why ? — 
On account of the highest Lord being designated as different 
from the embodied soul, in the states of deep sleep and of 
departing from the body. His difference from the embodied 
soul in the state of deep sleep is declared in the following 
passage, ‘ This person embraced by the intelligent (pr%-«a) 
Self knows nothing that is without, nothing that is within.’ 
Here the term, ‘ the person,’ must mean the embodied soul ; 
for of him it is possible to deny that he knows, because he, 
as being the knower, may know what is within and without. 
The ‘ intelligent Self,’ on the other hand, is the highest Lord, 
because he is never dissociated from intelligence, i. e. — in his 
case — all-embracing knowledge. — Similarly, the passage 
treating of departure, i. e. death (‘ this bodily Self mounted 
by the intelligent Self moves along groaning ’), refers to the 
highest Lord as different from the individual Self. There 
also we have to understand by the ‘ embodied one ’ the indi- 



I ADHYAYA, 3 pAdA, 42. 


235 


vidual soul which is the Lord of the body, while the ‘ intel- 
ligent one ' is again the Lord. We thus understand that 
‘on account of his being designated as something different, 
in the states of deep sleep and departure,' the highest Lord 
forms the subject of the passage. — With reference to the 
purvapakshin's assertion that the entire chapter refers to 
the embodied Self, because indicatory marks of the latter 
are found in its beginning, middle, and end, we remark 
that in the first place the introductory passage (‘ He 
among the pra^zas who consists of cognition’) does not 
aim at setting forth the character of the transmigrating 
Self, but rather, while merely referring to the nature of 
the transmigrating Self as something already known, aims 
at declaring its identity with the highest Brahman ; for 
it is manifest that the immediately subsequent passage, 
‘as if thinking, as if moving^,’ aims at discarding the 
attributes of the transmigrating Self. The concluding pas- 
sage again is analogous to the initial one ; for the words? 
‘ And that great unborn Self is he who,’ &c., mean : 
We have shown that that same cognitional Self, which is 
observed among the prdzzas, is the great unborn Self, i. e. 
the highest Lord. — He, again, who imagines that the pas- 
sages intervening (between the two quoted) aim at setting 
forth the nature of the transmigrating Self by represent- 
ing it in the waking state, and so on, is like a man who 
setting out towards the east, wants to set out at the same 
time towards the west. For in representing the states of 
waking, and so on, the passage does not aim at describing 
the soul as subject to different states or transmigration, but 
rather as free from all particular conditions and trans- 
migration. This is evident from the circumstance that 
on fPanaka’s question, which is repeated in every section, 
‘ Speak on for the sake of emancipation,’ Ya^zzavalkya 
replies each time, ‘ By all that he is not affected, for that 
person is not attached to anything’ (BW. Up. IV, 3, 14-16). 
And later on he says (IV, 3, 2a), ‘ He is not. followed by 


^ The stress lies here on the ‘ as if,' which intimate that the Self 
does not really think or move. 



236 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


good, not followed by evil, for he has then overcome all the 
sorrows of the heart.’ We have, therefore, to conclude that 
the chapter exclusively aims at setting forth the nature of 
the non-transmigrating Self. 

43. And on account of such words as Lord, &c. 

That the chapter aims at setting forth the nature of the 
non-transmigrating Self, we have to conclude from that 
circumstance also that there occur in it terms such as Lord 
and so on, intimating the nature of the non-transmigrating 
Self, and others excluding the nature of the transmigrating 
Self. To the first class belongs, for instance, ‘ He is the lord 
of all, the king of all things, the protector of all things.’ 
To the latter class belongs the passage, ‘ He does not be- 
come greater by good works, nor smaller by evil works.’ — 
From all which we conclude that the chapter refers to the 
non-transmigrating highest Lord. 



I ADIIYAYA, 4 PADA, I. 


237 


FOURTH PADA. 

Reverence to the highest Self! 

I. If it be said that some (mention) that which is 
based on inference (i. e. the pradhana) ; we deny this, 
because (the term alluded to) refers to what is con- 
tained in the simile of the body (i. e. the body itself) ; 
and (that the text) shows. 

In the preceding part of this work — as whose topic there 
has been set forth an enquiry into Brahman — we have at 
first defined Brahman (I, i, a) ; we have thereupon refuted 
the objection that that definition applies to the pradhana 
also, by showing that there is no scriptural authority for the 
latter (I, i, 5), and we have shown in detail that the common 
purport of all Veddnta-texts is to set forth the doctrine that 
Brahman, and not the pradh^wa, is the cause of the world. 
Here, however, the Sdnkhya again raises an objection which 
he considers not to have been finally disposed of. 

It has not, he says, been satisfactorily proved that there 
is no scriptural authority for the pradhdna ; for some jikhas 
contain expressions which seem to convey the idea of the 
pradhdna. From this it follows that Kapila and other 
supreme rzshis maintain the doctrine of the pradhana 
being the general cause only because it is based on the 
Veda.—As long therefore as it has not been proved that 
those passages to which the Sankhyas refer have a different 
meaning (i. e. do not allude to the pradhana), all our previous 
argumentation as to the omniscient Brahman being the cause 
of the world must be considered as unsettled. We there- 
fore now begin a new chapter which aims at proving that 
those passages actually have a different meaning. 

The Sankhyas maintain that that also wdiich is based on 
inference, i. e. the pradhana, is perceived in the text of some 
jikhas. We read, for instance, they say, in the Kat/^aka. 
(I, 3, ii), ‘ Beyond the Great there is the Undeveloped, 



vedanta-s6teas. 


238 

beyond the Undeveloped there is the Person.’ There we 
recognise, named by the same names and enumerated in the 
same order, the three entities with which we are acquainted 
from the Sahkhya-smr/ti, viz. the great principle, the Un- 
developed (the pradhana), and the souU. That by the Un- 
developed is meant the pradhana is to be concluded from 
the common use of Smrfti and from the etymological inter- 
pretation of which the word admits, the pradhana being 
called undeveloped because it is devoid of sound and other 
qualities. It cannot therefore be asserted that there is no 
scriptural authority for the pradhana. And this pradhana 
vouched for by Scripture we declare to be the cause of the 
world, on the ground of Scripture, Smrfti, and ratiocination. 

Your reasoning, we reply, is not valid. The passage 
from the Ka^'/zaka quoted by you intimates by no means the 
existence of that great principle and that Undeveloped 
which are known from the Sahkhya-smrzti. We do not 
recognise there the pradhana of the Sankhyas, i. e. an inde- 
pendent general cause consisting of three constituting 
elements ; we merely recognise the word ‘ Undeveloped,’ 
which does not denote any particular determined thing, but 
may — owing to its etymological meaning, ‘that which is 
not developed, not manifest ’ — denote anything subtle 
and difficult to distinguish. The Sankhyas indeed give to 
the word a settled meaning, as they apply it to the 
pradhana ; but then that meaning is valid for their system 
only, and has no force in the determination of the sense of 
the Veda. Nor does mere equality of position prove 
equality of being, unless the latter be recognised indepen- 
dently. None but a fool would think a cow to be a horse 
because he sees it tied in the usual place of a horse. We, 
moreover, conclude, on the strength of the general subject- 
matter, that the passage does not refer to the pradhana the 
fiction of the Sankhyas, ‘ on account of there being referred 


^ The Great one is the technical Sankhya-term for buddhi, 
avyakta is a common designation of pradhdna or prakrz'ti, and 
purusha is the technical name of the soul. Compare, for instance, 
Sinkhya Kar. 2, 3. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 1. 


239 


to that which is contained in the simile of the body.’ This 
means that the body which is mentioned in the simile of 
the chariot is here referred to as the Undeveloped. We 
infer this from the general subject-matter of the passage and 
from the circumstance of nothing else remaining. — The 
immediately preceding part of the chapter exhibits the 
simile in which the Self, the body, and so on, are compared 
to the lord of a chariot, a chariot, &c., ‘ Know the Self to 
be the lord of the chariot, the body to be the chariot, the 
intellect the charioteer, and the mind the reins. The senses 
they call the horses, the objects of the senses their roads. 
When he (the Self) is in union with the body, the senses 
and the mind, then wise people call him the enjoyer.’ The 
text then goes on to say that he whose senses, &c. are not 
well controlled enters into sawsara, while he who has them 
under control reaches the end of the journey, the highest 
place of Vish/m. The question then arises : What is the end 
of the journey, the highest place of Vish?2u ? Whereupon 
the text explains that the highest Self which is higher than 
the senses, Src., spoken of is the end of the journey, the 
highest place of Vish/m. ‘ Beyond the senses there are the 
objects, beyond the objects there is the mind, beyond the 
mind there is the intellect, the great Self is beyond the in- 
tellect. Beyond the great there is the Undeveloped, beyond 
the Undeveloped there is the Person. Beyond the Person 
there is nothing — this is the goal, the highest Road.’ In this 
passage we recognise the senses, &c. which in the preceding 
simile had been compared to horses and so on, and we thus 
avoid the mistake of abandoning the matter in hand and 
taking up a new subject. The senses, the intellect, and the 
mind are referred to in both passages under the same names. 
The objects (in the second passage) are the objects which 
are (in the former passage) designated as the roads of the 
senses ; that the objects are beyond (higher than) the senses 
is known from the scriptural passage representing the senses 
as grahas, i. e. graspers, and the objects as atigrahas, i. e. 
superior to the grahas (Brf. Up. Ill, a). The mind (manas) 
again is superior to the objects, because the relation of the 
senses and their objects is based on the mind. The intellect 



240 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


(biiddhi) is higher than the mind, since the objects of enjoy- 
ment are conve3''ed to the soul by means of the intellect. 
Higher than the intellect is the great Self which was repre- 
sented as the lord of the chariot in the passage, ‘ Know the 
Self to be the lord of the chariot,’ That the same Self is 
referred to in both passages is manifest from the repeated 
use of the word ‘ Self ; ’ that the Self is superior to intelli- 
gence is owing to the circumstance that the enjoyer is 
naturally superior to the instrument of enjoyment. The 
Self is appropriately called great as it is the master. — 
Or else the phrase 'the great Self’ may here denote the 
intellect of the first-born Hira;2yagarbha which is the basis 
of all intellects; in accordance with the following Smnti- 
passage' itis called mind, the great one ; reflection, Brahman ; 
the stronghold, intellect; enunciation, the Lord; highest 
knowledge, consciousness ; thought, remembrance V and like- 
wise with the following scriptural passage, ‘ He (Hira/^ya- 
garbha) who first creates Brahman and delivers the Vedas 
to him ’ (vSvet Up. VI, 18). The intellect, which in the 
former passage had been referred to under its common name 
buddhi, is here mentioned separately, since it may be repre- 
sented as superior to our human intellects. On this latter 
explanation of the term ‘the great Self,’ we must assume 
that the personal Self which in the simile had been compared 
to the charioteer is, in the latter passage, included In the 
highest person (mentioned last) ; to which there is no objec- 
tion, since in reality the personal Self and the highest Self 
are identical. — Thus there remains now the body only which 
had before been compared to a chariot. We therefore con- 

^ SaOTkalpavikalparfipamananaraktya haira7zyagarbM buddhir 
manas tasya;^ vyash/imana.^su sainash/itaya vyaptim dha mahdn 
iti. SaOTkalpadhaktitaya taihi sa7«dehaLmatva7« tatraha matir iti. 
Mahatvam upapddayati brahmeti. Bhogya^dtddharatvam aha pur 
iti, Niri’aydtmakatvam aha buddhir iti, Khthaktimattvam dha 
kbyatir iti, Niyamanajaktimatvam aha uvara iti. Loke yat 
prak7'zsh/aOT gTiimva tato » natirekam dha pra^weti. Tatphalam api 
tato ndrthdntaravishayam ity dha sa/zzvid id. Witpradh'dnatvam 
aha ^itir iti. (rzzdtasarvdrthdnusawtdhdnaraktim dha smmir /^eti. 
Ananda Giri, 


I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 2. 


241 


elude that the text after having enumerated the senses and 
all the other things mentioned before, in order to point 
out the highest place, points out by means of the one 
remaining word, viz. avyakta, the only thing remaining out 
of those which had been mentioned before, viz. the body. 
The entire passage aims at conveying the knowledge of the 
unity of the inward Self and Brahman, by describing the 
soul’s passing through sa?/zsara and release under the form 
of a simile in which the body, &c. of the soul — which is 
affected by Nescience and therefore joined to a body, senses, 
mind, intellect, objects, sensations, &c. — are compared to a 
chariot, and so on. — In accordance with this the subsequent 
verse states the difficulty of knowing the highest place of 
Vish?2U (‘ the Self is hidden in all beings and does not shine 
forth, but it is seen by subtle seers through their sharp and 
subtle intellect^), and after that the next verse declares Yoga 
to be the means of attaining that cognition. ‘ A wise man 
should keep down speech in the mind, he should keep down 
the mind in intelligence, intelligence he should keep down 
within the great Self, and he should keep that within the quiet 
Self.’ — That means : The wise man should restrain the 
activity of the outer organs such as speech, &c., and abide 
within the mind only ; he should further restrain the mind 
which is intent on doubtful external objects within intelli- 
gence, whose characteristic mark is decision, recognising that 
indecision is evil; he should further restrain intelligence 
within the great Self, i. e. the individual soul or else the 
fundamental intellect ; he should finally fix the great Self 
on the calm Self, i. e. the highest Seif, the highest goal, ol 
which the whole chapter treats. — If we in this manner review 
the general context, we perceive that there is no room for 
the pradhana imagined by the SMkhyas. 

2. But the subtle (body is meant by the term 
avyakta) on account of its capability (of being so 
designated). 

It has been asserted, under the preceding Sfitra, that the 
term ‘the Undeveloped’ signifies, on account of the general 
[34] R 



242 


VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


subject-matter and because the body only remains, the 
body and not the pradhana of the Sahkhyas. — But here 
the following’ doubt arises: How can the word ‘unde- 
veloped’ appropriately denote the body which, as a gross 
and clearly appearing thing, should rather be called vyakta, 
i. e. that which is developed or manifested ? 

To this doubt the Sutra replies that what the term 
avyakta denotes is the subtle causal body. Anything 
subtle may be spoken of as Undeveloped. The gross 
body indeed cannot directly be termed ‘undeveloped,’ 
but the subtle parts of the elements from which the gross 
body originates may be called so, and that the term de- 
noting the causal substance is applied to the effect also is 
a matter of common occurrence ; compare, for instance, the 
phrase ‘ mix the Soma with cows, i. e. milk ’ (iSfg-veda S. IX, 
46, 4). Another scriptural passage also — ‘ now all this was 
then undeveloped’ (BW. Up. I, 4, 7) — shows that this, i. e. 
this developed world with its distinction of names and 
forms, is capable of being termed undeveloped in so far 
as in a former condition it was in a merely seminal or 
potential state, devoid of the later evolved distinctions of 
name and form. 

3. (Such a previous seminal condition of the -world 
may be admitted) on account of its dependency on 
him (the Lord) ; (for such an admission is) according 
to reason. 

Here a new objection is raised. — If, the opponent says, 
in order to prove the possibility of the body being called 
undeveloped you admit that this world in its antecedent 
seminal condition before either names or forms are evolved 
can be called undeveloped, you virtually concede the 
doctrine that the pradhana is the cause of the world. For 
we Sdhkhyas understand by the term pradhana nothing 
but that antecedent condition of the world. 

Things lie differently, we rejoin. If we admitted some 
antecedent state of the world as the independent cause oU 
the actual world, we should indeed implicitly admit the 



I ADHYAYA, 4 pAdA, 3. 


243 


pradhdna doctrine. What we admit is, however, only a 
previous state dependent on the highest Lord, not an 
independent state. A previous stage of the world such as 
the one assumed by us must necessarily be admitted, since 
it is according to sense and reason. For without it the 
highest Lord could not be conceived as creator, as he 
could not become active if he were destitute of the po- 
tentiality of action. The existence of such a causal poten- 
tiality renders it moreover possible that the released souls 
should not enter on new courses of existence, as it is 
destroyed by perfect knowledge. For that causal potenti- 
ality is of the nature of Nescience; it is rightly denoted 
by the term ' undeveloped ; ’ it has the highest Lord for 
its substratum ; it is of the nature of an illusion ; it is 
a universal sleep in which are lying the transmigrating 
souls destitute for the time of the consciousness of their 
individual character This undeveloped principle is some- 
times denoted by the term akdra, ether; so, for instance, 
in the passage, ‘ In that Imperishable then, O Gdrgi, the 
ether is woven like warp and woof’ (Bn. Up. Ill, 8, ii). 
Sometimes, again, it is denoted by the term akshara, the 
Imperishable ; so, for instance (Mu. Up. II, i, 2), ‘ Higher, 
than the high Imperishable.’ Sometimes it is spoken of 
as Mayd, illusion ; so, for instance ( 5 ve. Up. IV, 10), ‘ Know 
then Prakn'ti is Mayd, and the great Lord he who is 
affected with Mdya.’ For Mayd is properly called un- 
developed or non-manifested since it cannot be defined 
either as that which is or that which is not. — The statement 
of the KaV^aka that ‘ the Undeveloped is beyond the Great 

^ Nanu na bi^ajaktir vidyayS,’ dahyate vastutvad almavan nety 
Sha avidyeti. Ke/l’it tu prati^dvam avidya^aktibhedam iH’/;anti 
Ian na avyaklavyakrftddi^abdayas tasyS bhedakabhavad ekatve^pi 
svajakt}4 vi/^ilrakdryakaratvad ity aha avyakteti. Na kz tasyS 
^tvarrayatvaw ^ivai-abdava/lyasya kalpilatv^d avidyarfipatv^t tzkkho.- 
bdalakshyasya brahmdvyatirektd ity ^ha paramervareti. Mdy£- 
vidyayor bhedSd ijvarasya mayarrayatvaw/ ^ivtndm avidySjrayateti 
vadanta?;^ pratytha mdyamayiti. Yatha may3,v{no mayd paratantii 
.tathaishflptty artha/^. Pradtau tasyar ietanapeksham aha mahdsuptir 
iti. Ananda Giri. 


R 2 



244 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


one ’ is based on the fact of the Great one originating from 
the Undeveloped, if the Great one be the intellect of 
Hirawyagarbha. If, on the other hand, we understand by 
the Great one the individual soul, the statement is founded 
on the fact of the existence of the individual soul depending 
on the Undeveloped, i. e. Nescience. For the continued 
existence of the individual soul as such is altogether owing 
to the relation in which it stands to Nescience. The 
quality of being beyond the Great one which in the first 
place belongs to the Undeveloped, i. e. Nescience, is attri- 
buted to the body which is the product of Nescience, the 
cause and the effect being considered as identical. Al- 
though the senses, &c. are no less products of Nescience, 
the term ‘ the Undeveloped ' here refers to the body only, 
the senses, &c. having already been specially mentioned 
by their individual names, and the body alone being left. — 
Other interpreters of the two last Sutras give a somewhat 
different explanation — There are, they say, two kinds of 
body, the gross one and the subtle one. The gross body 
is the one which is perceived ; the nature of the subtle one 
will be explained later on. (Ved. Su. Ill, i, i.) Both 
these bodies together were in the simile compared to the 
chariot; but here (in the passage under discussion) only 
the subtle body is referred to as the Undeveloped, since 
the subtle body only is capable of being denoted by that 
term. And as the soul’s passing through bondage and 
release depends on the subtle body, the lattet is said to be 
beyond the soul, like the things (arthavat), i. e. just as the 
objects are said to be beyond the senses because the activity 
of the latter depends on the objects. — But how — we ask those 
interpreters — is it possible that the word ‘Undeveloped’ 
should refer to the subtle body only, while, according to 
your opinion, both bodies had in the simile been represented 
as a chariot, and so equally constitute part of the topic of 
the chapter, and equally remain (to be mentioned in the 


* Sutradvayasya vrfttikrfdvyakhydnara utthdpayati. Go. An. 
AjSaryade^iyaniatam utthdpayati. An. Gi. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 4 . 


245 


passage under discussion)? — If you should rejoin that you 
are authorised to settle the meaning of what the text 
actually mentions, but not to find fault with what is not 
mentioned, and that the word avyakta which occurs in 
the text can denote only the subtle body, but not the 
gross body which is vyakta, i. e. developed or manifest ; we 
invalidate this rejoinder by remarking that the determin- 
ation of the sense depends on the circumstance of the 
passages interpreted constituting a syntactical whole. For 
if the earlier and the later passage do not form a whole 
they convey no sense, since that involves the abandonment 
of the subject started and the taking up of a new subject. 
But syntactical unity cannot be established unless it be 
on the ground of there being a want of a complementary 
part of speech or sentence. If you therefore construe the 
connexion of the passages without having regard to the 
fact that the latter passage demands as its complement 
that both bodies (which had been spoken of in the former 
passage) should be understood as referred to, you destroy 
all syntactical unity and so incapacitate yourselves from 
arriving at the true meaning of the text. Nor must you 
think that the second passage occupies itself with the subtle 
body only, for that reason that the latter is not easily 
distinguished from the Self, while the gross body is easily 
so distinguished on account of its readily perceived loath- 
someness. For the passage does not by any means refer 
to such a distinction — as we conclude from the circumstance 
of there being no verb enjoining it — but has for its only 
subject the highest place of Vish/^u, which had been men- 
tioned immediately before. For after having enumerated a 
series of things in which the subsequent one is always 
superior to the one preceding it, it concludes by saying 
that nothing is beyond the Person. — We might, however, 
accept the interpretation just discussed without damaging 
our general argumentation ; for whichever explanation we 
receive, so much remains clear that the Ka//^aka passage 
does not refer to the pradhina, 

4. And (the pradhana cannot be meant) because. 




246 


VEdAnTA-S'C’TRAS. 


there is no statement as to (the avyakta) being 
something to be cognised. 

The Sahkhyas, moreover, represent the pradhana as some- 
thing to be cognised in so far as they say that from the 
knowledge of the difference of the constitutive elements 
of the pradhana and of the soul there results the desired 
isolation of the soul. For without a knowledge of the 
nature of those constitutive elements it is impossible to 
cognise the difference of the soul from them. And some- 
where they teach that the pradhana is to be cognised by 
him who wishes to attain special powers. — Now in the 
passage under discussion the avyakta is not mentioned 
as an object of knowledge ; we there meet with the mere 
word avyakta, and there is no sentence intimating that the 
av5^akta is to be known or meditated upon. And it is 
impossible to maintain that a knowledge of things which 
(knowledge) is not taught in the text is of any advantage 
to man. — For this reason also we maintain that the word 
avyakta cannot* denote the pradhdna. — Our interpretation, 
on the other hand, is unobjectionable, since according to it 
the passage mentions the body (not as an object of know- 
ledge, but merely) for the purpose of throwing light on 
the highest place of Vishwu, in continuation of the simile in 
which the body had been compared to a chariot. 

5. And if yon maintain that the text does speak 
(of the pradhana as an object of knowledge) we deny 
that ; for the intelligent (highest) Self is meant, 
on account of the general subject-matter. 

Here the Sahkhya raises a new objection, and maintains 
that the averment made in the last Sutra is not proved, since 
the text later on speaks of the pradhana — which had been 
referred to as the Undeveloped — as an object of knowledge. 
‘ He who has perceived that which is without sound, without 
touch, without form, without decay, without taste, eternal, 
without smell, without beginning, without end, beyond the 
great and unchangeable, is freed from the jaws of death’ 
(Ka. Up. II, 3, 15). For here the text speaks of the pradhana. 


I ADHYAYA, 4 pAdA, 6. 247 


which is beyond the great, describing it as possessing the 
same qualities which the Sahkhya-smnti ascribes to it, and 
designating it as the object of perception. Hence we con- 
clude that the pradhdna is denoted by the term avyakta. 

To this we reply that the passage last quoted does repre- 
sent as the object of perception not the pradhana but the 
intelligent, i. e. the highest Self. We conclude this from 
the general subject-matter. For that the highest Self 
continues to form the subject-matter is clear from the fol- 
lowing reasons. In the first place, it is referred to in the 
passage, ‘ Beyond the person there is nothing, this is the goal, 
the highest Road ; ’ it has further to be supplied as the 
object of knowledge in the passage, ‘ The Self is hidden 
in all beings and does not shine forth,’ because it is there 
spoken of as difficult to know ; after that the restraint of 
passion, &c. is enjoined as conducive to its cognition, in the 
passage, *A wise man should keep down speech within 
the mind;’ and, finally, release from the jaws of death is 
declared to be the fruit of its knowledge. The Sdnkhyas, 
on the other hand, do not suppose that a man is freed from 
the jaws of death merely by perceiving the pradhina, but 
connect that result rather with the cognition of the intelli- 
gent Self. — The highest Self is, moreover, spoken of in all 
Vedanta-texts as possessing just those qualities which are 
mentioned in the passage quoted above, viz. absence of 
sound, and the like. Hence it follows, that the pradhana is 
in the text neither spoken of as the object of knowledge nor 
denoted by the term avyakta. 

6. And there is question and explanation relative 
to three things only (not to the pradhana). 

To the same conclusion we are led by the consideration 
of the circumstance that the KaifAavalli-upanishad brings 
forward, as subjects of discussion, only three things, viz. the 
fire sacrifice, the individual soul, and the highest Self. 
These three things only Yama explains, bestowing thereby 
the boons he had granted, and to them only the questions 
of NaHketas refer. Nothing else is mentioned or enquired 



248 


vedAnta-sutras. 


about. The question relative to the fire sacrifice is con- 
tained in the passage (Ka. Up. I, i, 13), ‘Thou knowest, O 
Death, the fire sacrifice which leads us to Heaven ; tell it 
to me, who am full of faith.’ The question as to the indi- 
vidual soul is contained in I, i, 20, ‘ There is that doubt 
when a man is dead, some saying, he is ; others, he is not. 
This I should like to know, taught by thee ; this is the third 
of my boons.’ And the question about the highest Self is 
asked in the passage (I, 2, 14 ), ‘ That which thou seest as 
neither this nor that, as neither effect nor cause, as neither 
past nor future, tell me that’ — The corresponding answers 
are given in I, i, 1 5, Yama then told him that fire sacrifice, 
the beginning of all the worlds, and what bricks are required 
for the altar, and how many;’ in the passage met with con- 
siderably later on (II, 5, 6 ; 7), ‘Well then, O Gautama, I shall 
tell thee this mystery, the old Brahman and what happens 
to the Self after reaching death. Some enter the womb 
in order to have a body as organic beings, others go into 
inorganic matter according to their work and according to 
their knowledge ; ’ and in the passage (I, 2, 18), ‘ The knowing 
Self is not born nor does it die,’ &c. ; which latter passage 
dilates at length on the highest Self. But there is no ques- 
tion relative to the pradhina, and hence no opportunity 
for any remarks on it. 

Here the Sankhya advances a new objection. Is, he asks, 
the question relative to the Self which is asked in the pas- 
sage, ‘ There is that doubt when a man is dead,’ &c., again 
resumed in the passage, ‘ That which thou seest as neither 
this nor that,’ &c,, or does the latter passage raise a distinct 
new question ? If the former, the two questions about the 
Self coalesce into one, and there are therefore altogether 
two questions only, one relative to the fire sacrifice, the 
other relative to the Self. In that case the Sutra has no 
right to speak of questions and explanations relating to 
three subjects. — If the latter, you do not consider it a 
mistake to assume a question in excess of the number of 
boons granted, and can therefore not object to us if we 
assume an explanation about the pradhina in excess of the 
number of questions asked. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 6. 249 


To this we make the following reply, — We by no means 
assume a question in excess of the number of boons granted, 
being prevented from doing so by the influence of the 
opening part of that syntactical whole which constitutes the 
KaZ/^avalli-upanishad. The Upanishad starts with the topic 
of the boons granted by Yama, and all the following part of 
the Upanishad — which is thrown into the form of a colloquy 
of Yama and Na/^iketas — carries on that topic up to the very 
end. Yama grants to Na^iketas, who had been sent by his 
father, three boons. For his first boon Na/^iketas chooses 
kindness on the part of his father towards him, for his second 
boon the knowledge of the fire sacrifice, for his third boon 
the knowledge of the Self. That the knowledge of the Self 
is the third boon appears from the indication contained in the 
passage (I, i, 30), ‘There is that doubt — j this is the third 
of my boons.’ — If we therefore supposed that the passage, 
‘ That which thou seest as neither this nor that,’ &c., raises 
a new question, we should thereby assume a question in 
excess of the number of boons granted, and thus destroy the 
connexion of the entire Upanishad. — But — the S^hkhya will 
perhaps interpose — it must needs be admitted that the pas- 
sage last quoted does raise a new question, because the subject 
enquired about is a new one. For the former question refers 
to the individual soul, as we conclude from the doubt ex- 
pressed in the words, ‘ There is that doubt when a man is 
dead — some saying, he is ; others, he is not.’ Now this 
individual soul, as having definite attributes, &c., cannot 
constitute the object of a question expressed in such terms 
as, ‘ This which thou seest as neither this nor that,’ See. ; 
the highest Self, on the other hand, may be enquired about 
in such terms, since it is above all attributes. The appearance 
of the two questions is, moreover, seen to differ ; for the 
former question refers to existence and non-existence, while 
the latter is concerned with an entity raised above all definite 
attributes, &c. Flence we conclude that the latter question, 
in which the former one cannot be recognised, is a separate 
question, and does not merely resume the subject of the 
former one. — All this argumentation is not valid, we reply, 
since we maintain the unity of the highest Self and the 


250 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


individual Self. If the individual Self were different from 
the highest Self, we should have to declare that the two 
questions are separate independent questions, but the 
two are not really different, as we know from other scrip- 
tural passages, such as ‘ Thou art that.’ And in the Upani- 
shad under discussion also the answer to the question, ‘ That 
which thou seest as neither this nor that,’ viz. the passage, 

‘ The knowing Self is not born, it dies not ’ — which answer 
is given in the form of a denial of the birth and death of the 
Self — clearly shows that the embodied Self and the highest 
Self are non-different. For there is room for a denial of 
something only when that something is possible, and the 
possibility of birth and death exists in the embodied Self 
only, since it is connected with the body, but not in the 
highest Self. — There is, moreover, another passage conveying 
the same meaning, viz. II, 4, 4, ‘ The wise when he knows 
that that by which he perceives all objects in sleep or in 
waking, is the great omnipresent Self, grieves no more.’ This 
passage makes the cessation of all grief dependent on the 
knowledge of the individual Self, in so far as it possesses 
the qualities of greatness and omnipresence, and thereby 
declares that the individual Self is not different from the 
highest Self. For that the cessation of all sorrow is con- 
sequent on the knowledge of the highest Self, is a recognised 
Vedanta tenet. — There is another passage also warning 
men not to look on the individual Self and the highest Self 
as different entities, viz. II, 4, 10, ‘What is here the same is 
there ; and what is there the same is here. He who sees 
any difference here goes from death to death.’ — The fol- 
lowing circumstance, too, is worthy of consideration. When 
Na/l’iketas has asked the question relating to the existence or 
non-existence of the soul after death, Yama tries to induce 
him to choose another boon, tempting him with the offer of 
various objects of desire. But Na^iketas remains firm. 
Thereupon Death, dwelling on the distinction of the Good 
and the Pleasant, and the distinction of wisdom and ignor- 
ance, praises Na/^iketas, ‘I believe Na^iketas to be one who 
desires knowledge, for even many pleasures did not tear 
thee away ’ (I, %, 4) ; and later on praises the question 



I ADIIYAYA, 4 PADA, 6. 


251 


asked by Na/(nketas, ' The wise who, by means of meditation 
on his Self, recognises the Ancient who is difficult to be 
seen, who has entered into the dark, who is hidden in the 
cave, who dwells in the abyss, as God, he indeed leaves joy 
and sorrow far behind’ (I, 1 , 12). Now all this means to 
intimate that the individual Self and the highest Self are 
non-different. For if Na/lnketas set aside the question, by 
asking which he had earned for himself the praise of Yama, 
and after having received that praise asked a new question, 
all that praise would have been bestowed on him unduly. 
Flence it follows that the question implied in I, 2, 14, ‘ That 
which thou seest as neither this nor that,’ merely resumes 
the topic to which the question in I, i, 20 had referred. — 
Nor is there any basis to the objection that the two questions 
differ in form. The second question, in reality, is concerned 
with the same distinction as the first. The first enquires 
about the existence of the soul apart from the body, &c. ; 
the second refers to the circumstance of that soul not being 
subject to sawsara. For as long as Nescience remains, so 
long the soul is affected with definite attributes, &c. ; but 
as soon as Nescience comes to an end, the soul is one 
with the highest Self, as is taught by such scriptural texts 
as ‘Thou art that.’ But whether Nescience be active or 
inactive, no difference is made thereby in the thing itself (viz. 
the soul). A man may, in the dark, mistake a piece of rope 
lying on the ground for a snake, and run away from it, 
frightened and trembling ; thereon another man may tell 
him, ‘ Do not be afraid, it is only a rope, not a snake ; ’ and he 
may then dismiss the fear caused by the imagined snake, 
and stop running. But all the while the presence and subse- 
quent absence of his erroneous notion, as to the rope being 
a snake, make no difference whatever in the rope itself. 
Exactly analogous is the case of the individual soul which 
is in reality one with the highest soul, although Nescience 
makes it appear different. Hence the reply contained in 
the passage, ‘ It is not born, it dies not,’ is also to be con- 
sidered as furnishing an answer to the question asked in I, 
I, 20. — The Sutra is to be understood with reference to the 
distinction of the individual Self and the highest Self which 




252 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


results from Nescience. Although the question relating to 
the Self is in reality one only, yet its former part (I, i, 20) 
is seen specially to refer to the individual Self, since there a 
doubt is set forth as to the existence of the soul when, at 
the time of death, it frees itself from the body, and since 
the specific marks of the sai’;«sara-state, such as activity, &c. 
are not denied ; while the latter part of the question (I, 2, 
14), where the state of being beyond all attributes is spoken 
of, clearly refers to the highest Self. — For these reasons the 
Sutra is right in assuming three topics of question and 
explanation, viz. the fire sacrifice, the individual soul, 
and the highest Self. Those, on the other hand, who 
assume that the pradhana constitutes a fourth subject 
discussed in the Upanishad, can point neither to a boon 
connected witli it, nor to a question, nor to an answer. 
Hence the pradhana hypothesis is clearly inferior to our 
own. 

7. And (the case of the term avyakta) is like that 
of the term mahat. 

While the Sinkhyas employ the term ‘ the Great one,’ to 
denote the first-born entity, which is mere existence^ (? viz. 
the intellect), the term has a different meaning in Vedic use. 
This we see from its being connected with the Self, &c. in 
such passages as the following, ‘ The great Self is beyond 
the Intellect’ (Ka. Up. 1,3, 10); ‘The great omnipresent 
Self’ (Ka. Up. I, a, as); ‘I know that great person’ (6've. 
Up. Ill, 8). We thence conclude that the word avyakta 
also, where it occurs in the Veda, cannot denote the 
pradhana. — The pradhina is therefore a mere thing of 
inference, and not vouched for by Scripture. 

8. (It cannot be maintained that afd means the 

^ The commentators give different explanations of the Satla- 
matra of the text. — Satdm&tre sattvapradhanaprakrz’ter adya- 
pariwame. Go. An. — Bhogipavargapurushdrthasya maha/^Mabdi- 
tabuddhikaryatvdt purushapekshitaphalakfirazzaOT sad u/^yate tatra 
bhdvapratyayo pi svarupS.rtho na sSmanyavaX’t kdrylnumeyaw 
mahan na pratyaksham iti mStrarabda/z. Ananda Giri. 


I ADHYAYA, 4 pAdA, 8. 


253 


pradhAiia) because no special characteristic is stated ; 
as in the case of the cup. 

Here the advocate of the pradhana comes again forward 
and maintains that the absence of scriptural authority for 
the pradhdna is not yet proved. For, he says, we have the 
following mantra (vSve. Up. IV, 5), ‘ There is one a^i^, red, 
white, and black, producing manifold offspring of the same 
nature. There is one a^a who loves her and lies by her ; 
there is another who leaves her after having enjoyed her.’ — 
In this mantra the words ‘ red,’ ^ white,’ and ‘ black ’ denote 
the three constituent elements of the pradhina. Passion is 
called red on account of its colouring, i. e. influencing pro- 
perty ; Goodness is called white, because it is of the nature 
of Light ; Darkness is called black on account of its covering 
and obscuring property. The state of equipoise of the three 
constituent elements, i. e. the pradhana, is denoted by the at- 
tributes of its parts, and is therefore called red — white — black. 
It is further called a^i, i. e. unborn, because it is acknow- 
ledged to be the fundamental matter out of which everything 
springs, not a mere effect. — But has not the word a^i the 
settled meaning of sh e-goat ? — True; but the ordinary 
meaning of the word cannot be accepted in this place, 
because true knowledge forms the general subject-matter. — 
That pradhdna produces many creatures pai'ticipating in its 
three constituent elements. One unborn being loves her 
and lies by her, i. e. some souls, deluded by ignorance, 
approach her, and falsely imagining that they experience 
pleasure or pain, or are in a state of dulness, pass through 
the course of transmigratory existence. Other souls, again, 
which have attained to discriminative knowledge, lose their 
attachment to prakWti, and leave her after having enjoyed 
her, i. e. after she has afforded to them enjoyment and release. 
— On the ground of this passage, as interpreted above, the 

^ As the meaning of the word a^a is going to be discussed, and 
as the author of the Shtras and Aankara seem to disagree as to its 
meaning (see later on), I prefer to leave the word untranslated in 
this place, — Aahkara reads — and explains, — in the mantra, sarhp^/^ 
(not sarhp^m) and bhuktabhogim, not bhuktabhogyam. 




2 54 VEDANTA-stjTR AS. 

followers of Kapila claim the authority of Scripture for their 
pradh^na hypothesis. 

To this argumentation we reply, that the quoted mantra 
by no means proves the Sahkhya doctrine to be based on 
Scripture. That mantra, taken by itself, is not able to give 
additional strength to any doctrine. For, by means of 
some supposition or other, the terms a^d, &c. can be 
reconciled with any doctrine, and there is no reason for 
the special assertion that the Sahkhya doctrine only is meant. 
The case is analogous to that of the cup mentioned in the 
mantra, ‘There is a cup having its mouth below and its 
bottom above ’ (Bn. Up. II, 3). Just as it is impossible to 
decide on the ground of this mantra taken by itself what 
special cup is meant — it being possible to ascribe, somehow 
or other, the quality of the mouth being turned downward 
to any cup — ; so here also there is no special quality stated, 
so that it is not possible to decide from the mantra itself 
whether the pradhana is meant by the term a^a, or some- 
thing else. — But in connexion with the mantra about the 
cup we have a supplementary passage from which we learn 
what kind of cup is meant, ‘ What is called the cup having 
its mouth below and its bottom above is this head.’ — Whence, 
however, can we learn what special being is meant by the 
a^ of the Tvet^.yvatara-upanishad? — To this question the 
next Shtra replies. 

9, But the (elements) beginning with light (are 
meant by the term a^a) ; for some read so in their 
text. 

By the term a^i' we have to understand the causal 
matter of the four classes of beings, which matter has sprung 
from the highest Lord and begins with light, i. e. comprises 
■fire, water, and earth. — The word ‘ but ’ (in the Sutra) gives 
emphasis to the assertion. — This Sigk is to be considered as 
comprising three elementary substances, not as consisting of 
three gu??as in the Sankhya sense. We draw this conclusion 
from the fact that one jdkhd, after having related how fire, 
water, and earth sprang from the highest Lord, assigns to 
them red. colour, and so on. ‘ The red colour of burning fire 



I ADHyAyA, 4 PADA, 9. 


255 


(agiii) is the colour of the elementary fire (te^as), its white 
colour is the colour of water, its black colour the colour of 
earth,’ &c. Now those three elements — fire, water, and earth — 
we recognise in the ^vetii-vatara passage, as the words red, 
white, and black are common to both passages, and as these 
words primarily denote special colours and can be applied 
to the Sankhya gu;>«as in a secondary sense only. That 
passages whose sense is beyond doubt are to be used for the 
interpretation of doubtful passages, is a generally acknow- 
ledged rule. As we therefore find that in the Svet^.yvatara — 
after the general topic has been started in I, i, ‘ The Brahman- 
students say. Is Brahman the cause ? ’ — the text, previous 
to the passage under discussion, speaks of a power of the 
highest Lord which arranges -the whole world (‘ the Sages 
devoted to meditation and concentration have seen the 
power belonging to God himself, hidden in its own 
qualities’); and as further that same power is referred 
to in two subsequent complementary passages (‘ Know 
then, Prakrfti is Mdyd, and the great Lord he who is 
affected with ; ’ ‘ who being one only rules over every 
germ IV, 10, ii); it cannot possibly be asserted that the 
mantra treating of the zgk refers to some independent causal 
matter called pradhana. We rather assert, on the ground 
of the general subject-matter, that the mantra describes 
the same divine power referred to in the other passages, in 
which names and forms He unevolved, and which we assume 
as the antecedent condition of that state of the world 
in which names and forms are evolved. And that divine 
power is represented as three-coloured, because its products, 
viz. fire, water, and earth, have three distinct colours. — But 
how can we maintain, on the ground of fire, water, and earth 
having three colours, that the causal matter is appropriately 
called a three-coloured ag*^ ? if we consider, on the one hand, 
that the exterior form of the genus aga (i. c. goat) does not 
inhere in fire, water, and earth ; and, on the other hand, that 
Scripture teaches fire, water, and earth to have been pro- 
duced, so that the word ag'd cannot be taken in the sense 
‘ non-produced — To this question the next Sfitra replies. 


^ Here there seems to be a certain discrepancy between the 




256 


vedanta-sOtras. 


10. And on account of the statement of the 
assumption (of a metaphor) there is nothing con- 
trary to reason (in a^a denoting the causal matter) ; 
just as in the case of honey (denoting the sun) and 
similar cases. 

The word z.gk neither expresses that fire, water, and earth 
belong to the goat species, nor is it to be explained as 
meaning ‘ unborn ; ’ it rather expresses an assumption, i. e. 
it intimates the assumption of the source of all beings (which 
source comprises fire, water, and earth), being compared to 
a she-goat. For as accidentally some she-goat might be 
partly red, partly white, partly black, and might have many 
young goats resembling her in colour, and as some he-goat 
might love her and lie by her, while some other he-goat 
might leave her after having enjoyed her ; so the universal 
causal matter which is tri-coloured, because comprising fire, 
water, and earth, produces many inanimate and animate 
beings similar to itself, and is enjoyed by the souls fettered 
by Nescience, while it is abandoned by those souls which 
have attained true knowledge. — Nor must we imagine that 
the distinction of individual souls, which is implied in the 
preceding explanation, involves that reality of the multi- 
plicity of souls which forms one of the tenets of other philo- 
sophical schools. For the purport of the passage is to 
intimate, not the multiplicity of souls, but the distinction of 

views of the Sutra writer and iShfikara. Govinddnanda notes that 
according to the Bh^shyakrft a^d means simply mdyd — which 
interpretation is based on prakara?/a — while, according to the Sfilra- 
kr/t, who explains a^S on the ground of the X>^andogya-passage 
treating of the three primary elements, zg^ denotes the aggregate of 
those three elements constituting an av^ntaraprakmi. — On 6’an- 
kara’s explanation the term presents no difficulties, for maya is 
zgi, i. e. unborn, not produced. On the explanation of the Sfitra 
writer, however, a^i cannot mean unborn, since the three primary 
elements are products. Hence we are thrown back on the xMhi 
signification of a^fi, according to which it means she-goat. But 
how can the avantara-praknd be called a she-goat? To this 
question the next Sfitra replies. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, II. 


257 


the states of bondage and release. This latter distinction, 
is explained with reference to the multiplicity of souls as 
ordinarily conceived ; that multiplicity^ however, depends 
altogether on limiting adjuncts, and is the unreal product 
of wrong knowledge merely ; as we know from scriptural 
passages such as, ‘ He is the one God hidden in all beings, 
all-pervading, the Self in all beings,’ &c. — The words ‘ like 
the honey ’ (in the Sutra) mean that just as the sun, although 
not being honey, is represented as honey {Kh. Up. Ill, i), 
and speech as a cow (Brf. Up. V, 8), and the heavenly 
world, &c. as the fires (Bn. Up. VI, 2, 9), so here the 
causal matter, although not being a she-goat, is metaphori- 
cally represented as one. There is therefore nothing con- 
trary to reason in the circumstance of the term agk being 
used to denote the aggregate of fire, water, and earth. 

1 1 . (The assertion that there is scriptural autho- 
rity for the pradhfina, &c. can) also not (be based) 
on the mention of the number (of the Sahkhya 
categories), on account of the diversity (of the 
categories) and on account of the excess (over the 
number of those categories). 

The attempt to base the Sinkhya doctrine on the mantra 
speaking of the ag-k having failed, the SMkhya again comes 
forward and points to another mantra ; ' He in whom the five 
“ five-people ” and the ether rest, him alone I believe to be the 
Self ; I who know believe him to be Brahman ’ (BrL Up. IV, 
4, 17). In this mantra we have one word which expresses 
the number five, viz. the five-people, and then another 
word, viz. five, which qualifies the former ; these two words 
together therefore convey the idea of five pentads, i.e. 
twenty-five. Now as many beings as the number twenty- 
five presupposes, just so many categories the Sfiiikhya 
system counts. Cp. Safikhya Kirik^, 3 : ' The funda- 
mental causal substance (i. e. the pradhana) is not an effect. 
Seven (substances), viz. the Great one (Intellect), and so 
on, are causal substances as well as effects. Sixteen are 
effects. The soul is neither a causal substance nor an effect’ 

[ 34 ] 


s 



258 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


As therefore the number twenty- five, which occurs in the 
scriptural passage quoted, clearly refers to the twenty-five 
categories taught in the Sankhya-smrzti, it follows that the 
doctrine of the pradhana, &c. rests on a scriptural basis. 

To this reasoning we make the following reply. — It is 
impossible to base the assertion that the pradhana, Src. 
have Scripture in their favour on the reference to their 
number which you pretend to find in the text, ‘ on account 
of the diversity of the Sinkhya categories/ The Sankhya 
categories have each their individual difference, and there 
are no attributes belonging in common to each pentad on 
account of which the number twenty-five could be divided 
into five times five. For a number of individually separate 
things can, in general, not be combined into smaller groups 
of two or three, &c. unless there be a special reason for 
such combination. — Here the Siiikhya will perhaps rejoin 
that the expression five (times) five is used only to denote 
the number twenty-five which has five pentads for its 
constituent parts ; just as the poem says, ‘ five years and 
seven Indra did not rain,’ meaning only that there was no 
rain for twelve years. — But this explanation also is not 
tenable. In the first place, it is liable to the objection that 
it has recourse to indirect indication — In the second 
place, the second ‘five’ constitutes a compound with the 
word ‘people,’ the Brahma/^a-accent showing that the 
two form one word only^. To the same conclusion we 
are led by another passage also (Taitt. Samh. I, 6, a, a, 
pasa-IrdnaV;^ tvd pa7^/&a^ananam, &c.) where the two terms 
constitute one word, have one accent and one case- 


Indication (Iaksha/4, which consists in this case in five times five 
being used instead of twenty-five) is considered as an objectionable 
mode of expression, and therefore to be assumed in interpretation 
only where a term can in no way be shown to have a direct 
meaning. 

^ That is only one word appears from its having 

only one accent, viz. the uditta on the last syllable, which udatta 
becomes anuditta according to the rules laid down in the Bhtshika 
Sfitra for the accentuation of the AS'atapatha-brahraa^a, 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PAD A, II. 


259 


termination. The word thus being a compound there 
is neither a repetition of the word ‘ five/ involving two 
pentads, nor does the one five qualify the other, as the 
mere secondary member of a compound cannot be qualified 
by another word. — But as the people are already denoted 
to be five by the compound ‘ five-people,’ the effect of the 
other ‘five’ qualifying the compound will be that we 
understand twenty-five people to be meant ; just as the 
expression ‘ five five-bundles ’ (pa/^/^a pa77/&apulya/^) conveys 
the idea of twenty-five bundles. — The instance is not an 
analogous one, we reply. The word ‘ paTz-^apuli ’ denotes 
a unity (i.e. one bundle made up of five bundles), and hence 
when the question arises, ‘ How many such bundles are 
there?’ it can be qualified by the word ‘five,’ indicating 
that there are five such bundles. The word pa;7/&a,^ana/2, 
on the other hand, conveys at once the idea of distinction 
(i.e. of five distinct things), so that there is no room at all 
for a further desire to know how many people there are, 
and hence no room for a further qualification. And if the 
word ‘five’ be taken as a qualifying word it can only 
qualify the numeral five (in five-people) ; the objection 
against which assumption has already been stated. — For 
all these reasons the expression the five five-people cannot 
denote the twenty-five categories of the Sankhyas. — This 
is further not possible ‘ on account of the excess,’ For on 
the Sankhya interpretation there would be an excess over 
the number twenty-five, owing to the circumstance of the 
ether and the Self being mentioned separately. The Self 
is spoken of as the abode in which the five five-people rest, 
the clause ‘ Him I believe to be the Self’ being connected 
with the ‘in whom’ of the antecedent clause. Now the 
Self is the intelligent soul of the Sdnkhyas which is 
already included in the twenty-five categories, and which 
therefore, on their interpretation of the passage, would 
here be mentioned once as constituting the abode and once 
as what rests in the abode ! If, on the other hand, the 
soul were supposed not to be comprised in the twenty-five 
categories, the Sinkhya would thereby abandon his own 
doctrine of the categories being twenty-five. The same 



260 


VEDANTA- sOtR AS. 


remarks apply to the separate mention made of the ether. 
— How, finally, can the mere circumstance of a certain 
number being referred to in the sacred text justify the 
assumption that what is meant are the twenty- five Sahkhya 
categories of which Scripture speaks in no other place? 
especially if we consider that the word ^ana has not the 
settled meaning of category, and that the number may be 
satisfactorily accounted for on another interpretation of the 
passage. 

How, then, the Sahkhya will ask, do you interpret the 
phrase ‘the five five-people?’ — On the ground, we reply, 
of the rule 'Pkmm II, i, 50, according to which certain 
compounds formed with numerals are mere names. The 
word paWi^a^ana/^ thus is not meant to convey the idea of 
the number five, but merely to denote certain classes of 
beings. Hence the question may present itself, How many 
such classes are there? and to this question an answer 
is given by the added numeral ^five.’ There are certain 
classes of beings called five-people, and these classes are 
five. Analogously we may speak of the seven seven- 
nshis, where again the compound denotes a class of beings 
merely, not their number. — Who then are those five- 
people? — To this question the next Sutra replies. 

12. (The pa? 1 ia^anai are) the breath and so 
on, (as is seen) from the complementary passage. 

The mantra in which the pa.nkci£-a.n^/i are mentioned is 
followed by another one in which breath and four other 
things are mentioned for the purpose of describing the 
nature of Brahman. ‘They who know the breath of 
breath, the eye of the eye, the ear of the ear, the food of 
food, the mind of mind^.’ Hence we conclude, on the 
ground of proximity, that the five-people are the beings 
mentioned in this latter mantra. — But how, the Sahkhya 
asks, can the word ‘ people ’ be applied to the breath, the 
eye, the ear, and so on? — How, we ask in return, can it be 

^ So in the Madhyandina recension of the ITpanishad; the 
recension has not the clause ‘ the food of food.’ 



I ADHYAYA’ 4 PADA, 12. 


261 


applied to your categories ? In both cases the common 
meaning of the word ' people ’ has to be disregarded ; 
but in favour of our explanation is the fact that the breath, 
the eye, and so on, are mentioned in a complementary 
passage. The breath, the eye, &c. may be denoted by the 
word ‘people' because they are connected with people. 
Moreover, we find the word ‘ person,’ which means as much 
as ‘ people,’ applied to the pra?^as in the passage, ‘ These 
are the five persons of Brahman’ Up. Ill, 13, 6) ; and 
another passage runs, ' Breath is father, breath is mother,’ 
&c. (X'/i. Up. VII, 15, i). And, owing to the force of 
composition, there is no objection to the compound being 
taken in its settled conventional meaning h — But how can 
the conventional meaning be had recourse to, if there is no 
previous use of the word in that meaning ? — That may be 
done, we reply, just as in the case of udbhid and similar 
words We often infer that a word of unknown meaning 
refers to some known thing because it is used in connexion 
with the latter. So, for instance, in the case of the fol- 
lowing words ; ‘ He is to sacrifice with the udbhid ; he cuts 
the yfipa ; he makes the vedi.’ Analogously we conclude 
that the term which, from the grammatical 

rule quoted, is known to be a name, and which there- 
fore demands a thing of which it is the name, denotes 
the breath, the eye, and so on, which are connected with 
it through their being mentioned in a complementary 
passage. — Some commentators explain the word para/^a- 


^ This in answer to the Sahkhya who objects to ^ana when 
applied to the prdna, &c. being interpreted with the help of 
lakshawa; while if referred to the pradhana, &c. it may be 
explained to have a direct meaning, on the ground of yaugika 
interpretation (the pradhdna being ^gana because it pioduces, the 
mahat &c. being ^ana because they are produced). The Veddntin 
points out that the compound pa?1/t’a^anaA has its own rhef/^i- 
meaning, just as a^vakaivza, literally horse*ear, which conventionally 
denotes a certain plant. 

® We infer that udbhid is the name of a sacrifice because it is 
mentioned in connexion with the act of sacrificing ; we infer that 
the yfipa is a wooden post because it is said to be cut, and so on. 



262 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


gm'kh to mean the Gods, the Fathers, the Gandharvas, 
the Asuras, and the Rakshas. Others, again, think that 
the four castes together with the Nishadas are meant. 
Again, some scriptiii'al passage (i?zg-veda Sawh, VIII, 53, 7) 
speaks of the tribe of ^the five-people,’ meaning thereby 
the created beings in general ; and this latter explanation 
also might be applied to the passage under discussion. 
The teacher (the Sutrakara), on the other hand, aiming at 
showing that the passage does not refer to the twenty-five 
categories of the Sankhyas, declares that on the ground of 
the complementary passage breath, &c. have to be under- 
stood. 

Well, let it then be granted that the five-people mentioned 
in the Madhyandina-text are breath, &c. since that text 
mentions food also (and so makes up the number five). 
But how shall we interpret the Ka;^va-text which does not 
mention food (and thus altogether speaks of four things 
only) ? — To this question the next Sutra replies. 

13. In the case of (the text of) some (the Kd^^vas) 
where food is not mentioned, (the number five is 
made full) by the light (mentioned in the preceding 
mantra). 

The Ka;wa-text, although not mentioning food, makes up 
the full number five, by the light mentioned in the mantra 
preceding that in which the five-people are spoken of. That 
mantra describes the nature of Brahman by saying, ‘ Film 
the gods worship as the light of lights.’ — If it be asked 
how it is accounted for that the light mentioned in both 
texts equally is in one text to be employed for the expla- 
nation of the five-people, and not in the other text ; we reply 
that the reason lies in the difference of the requirements. 
As the Madhyandinas meet in one and the same mantra 
with breath and four other entities enabling them to interpret 
the term, ^ the five-people,’ they are in no need of the light 
mentioned in another mantra. The Kd/was, on the other 
hand, cannot do without the light. The case is analogous 
to that of the Sho^fajin-cup, which, according to different 



1 ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 1 4. 


263 


passages, is either to be offered or not to be offered at the 
atiratra-sacrifice. 

We have proved herewith that Scripture offers no basis 
for the doctrine of the pradhdna. That this doctrine can- 
not be proved either by Smr/ti or by ratiocination will be 
shown later on. 

14. (Although there is a conflict of the Vedanta- 
passages with regard to the things created, such as) 
ether and so on ; (there is no such conflict with 
regard to the Lord) on account of his being re- 
presented (in one passage) as described (in other 
passages), viz, as the cause (of the world) . 

In the preceding part of the work the right definition of 
Brahman has been established ; it has been shown that all the 
Veddnta- texts have Brahman for their common topic ; and 
it has been proved that there is no scriptural authority for 
the doctrine of the pradhdna. — But now a new objection 
presents itself. 

It is not possible — our opponent says — to prove either 
that Brahman is the cause of the origin, &c. of the world, 
or that all Ved4nta-texts refer to Brahman; because we 
observe that the Vedanta-texts contradict one another. 
All the Veddnta-passages which treat of the creation 
enumerate its successive steps in different order, and so in 
reality speak of different creations. In one place it is said 
that from the Self there sprang the ether (Taftt. Up. II, i) ; 
in another place that the creation began with fire {Kh, Up. 

2., 3); in another place, again, that the Person created 
breath and from breath faith (Pi*. Up.VI, 4)'; in another place, 
again, that the Self created these worlds, the water (above 
the heaven), light, the mortal (earth), and the water (below 
the earth) (Ait. Ar. II, 4, i, 2; 3). There no order is stated 
at all. Somewhere else it is said that the creation origi- 
nated from the Non-existent. ‘ In the beginning this was 
non-existent; from it was born what exists’ (Taitt. Up. II, 7) : 
and, ‘ In the beginning this was non-existent ; it became 
existent ; it grew ’ [Kh. Up. Ill, 19, i). In another place, 



264 


vedAnta-s-Otras. 


again, the doctrine of the Non-existent being the ante- 
cedent of the creation is impugned, and the Existent men- 
tioned in its stead. ‘ Others say, in the beginning there 
was that only which is not ; but how could it be thus, my 
dear ? How could that which is be born of that which is 
not?’ {Kh. Up. VI, 2, 1 ; 2.) And in another place, again, 
the development of the world is spoken of as having taken 
place spontaneously, ‘ Now all this was then undeveloped. 
It became developed by form and name ’ (BrA Up. I, 4, 7), 
— As therefore manifold discrepancies are observed, and 
as no option is possible in the case of an accomplished 
matter'^, the Vedanta-passages cannot be accepted as 
authorities for determining the cause of the world, but we 
must rather accept some other cause of the world regting 
on the authority of SmWti and Reasoning. 

To this we make the following reply. — Although the 
Vedanta-passages may be conflicting with regard to the 
order of the things created, such as ether and so on, they 
do not conflict with regard to the creator, ‘on account of 
his being represented as described,’ That means ; such as 
the creator is described in any one Vedanta-passage, viz. as 
all-knowing, the Lord of all, the Self of all, without a 
second, so he is represented in all other Vedanta-passages 
also. Let us consider, for instance, the description of 
Brahman (given in Taitt. Up. II, i ff.). There it is said at 
first, ‘ Truth, knowledge, infinite is Brahman.’ Here the 
word ‘knowledge,’ and so likewise the statement, made 
later on, that; Brahman desired (II, 6), intimate that Brah- 
man is of the nature of intelligence. Further, the text 
declares ^ that the cause of the world is the general Lord, by 
representing it as not dependent on anything else. It further 
applies to the cause of the world the term ‘ Self ’ (II, i), and 
it represents it as abiding within the series of sheaths begin- 


^ Option being possible only in the case of things to be accom- 
plished, i.e. actions. 

^ According to Go. An. in the passage, ‘That made itself its 
Self’ (ir, '7); according to An. Giri in the passage, ‘He created 
all’ (11, 6). 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, I4. 


265 


ning with the gross body ; whereby it affirms it to be the 
internal Self within all beings. Again — in the passage, 

‘ May I be many, may I grow forth ’ — it tells how the Self 
became many, and thereby declares that the creator is non- 
different from the created effects. And — in the passage, 

‘ He created all this whatever there is ’ — it represents the 
creator as the Cause of the entire world, and thereby declares 
him to have been without a second previously to the 
creation. The same characteristics which in the above 
passages are predicated of Brahman, viewed as the Cause of 
the world, we find to be predicated of it in other passages 
also, so, for instance, ‘ Being only, my dear, was this in the 
beginning, one only, without a second. It thought, may I 
be many, may I grow forth. It sent forth fire ’ (A’/i. Up. 
VI, a, I ; 3), and ' In the beginning all this was Self, one 
only; there was nothing else blinking whatsoever. He 
thought, shall I send forth worlds? ^ (Ait. Ar. II, 4, i, i ; a.) 
The Vedanta-passages which are concerned with setting 
forth the cause of the world are thus in harmony through- 
out. — On the other hand, there are found conflicting state- 
ments concerning the world, the creationf being in some 
places said to begin with ether, in other places with fire, and 
so on. But, in the first place, it cannot be said that the 
conflict of statements concerning the world affects the 
statements concerning the cause, i.e. Brahman, in which all 
the Vedanta-texts are seen to agree — for that would be an 
altogether unfounded generalization ; — and, in the second 
place, the teacher will reconcile later on (II, 3) those con- 
flicting passages also which refer to the world. And, to 
consider the matter more thoroughly, a conflict of state- 
ments regarding the world would not even matter greatly, 
since the creation of the world and similar topics are not at 
all what Scripture wishes to teach. For we neither observe 
nor are told by Scripture that the welfare of man depends 
on those matters in any way; nor have we the right to 
assume such a thing ; because we conclude from the intro- 
ductory and concluding clauses that the passages about the 
creation and the like form only subordinate members of 
passages treating of Brahman. That all the passages 



266 


VEDANTA-St^TRAS. 


setting forth the creation and so on subserve the purpose of 
teaching Brahman, Scripture itself declares ; compare Kh, 
Up. VI, 8, 4, ‘As food too is an offshoot, seek after its root, 
viz. water. And as water too is an offshoot, seek after its 
root, viz. fire. And as fire too is an offshoot, seek after its 
root, viz. the True.’ We, moreover, understand that by 
means of comparisons such as that of the clay {Kh. Up. VI, 
I, 4) the creation is described merely for the purpose of 
teaching us that the effect is not really different from the 
cause. Analogously it is said by those who know the sacred 
tradition, ‘ If creation is represented by means of (the 
similes of) clay, iron, sparks, and other things ; that is only 
a means for making it understood that (in reality) there is 
no difference whatever’ (Gauffap. Ka. Ill, 15). — On the 
other hand, Scripjiure expressly states the fruits connected 
with the knowledge of Brahman, ‘ He who knows Brahman 
obtains the highest’ (Taitt. Up. II, 1) ; ‘He who knows the 
Self overcomes grief’ {Kh. Up. VII, i, 3); ‘A man who 
knows him passes over death’ ( 5 ve. Up. Ill, 8). That 
fruit is, moreover, apprehended by intuition (pratyaksha), 
for as soon as, by means of the doctrine, ‘ That art thou,’ a 
man has arrived at the knowledge that the Self is non- 
transmigrating, its transmigrating nature vanishes for him. 

It remains to dispose of the assertion that passages such 
as •' Non-being this was in the beginning ’ contain conflicting 
statements about the nature of the cause. This is done in 
the next Sutra. 

15. On account of the connexion (with passages 
treating of Brahman, the passages speaking of the 
Non-being do not intimate absolute Non-existence). 

The passage ‘ Non-being indeed was this in the beginning ’ 
(Taitt. Up. II, 7) does not declare that the cause of the 
world is the absolutely Non-existent which is devoid of 
all Selfhood. For in the preceding sections of the Upani- 
shad Brahman is distinctly denied to be the Non-existing, 
and is defined to be that which is (‘ He who knows the 
Brahman as non-existing becomes himself non-existing. 



I adhyAya, 4 pAda, 15. 


267 


He who knows the Brahman as existing him we know 
himself as existing ') ; it is further, by means of the series 
of sheaths, viz. the sheath of food, &c., represented as the 
inner Self of everything. This same Brahman is again 
referred to in the clause, ‘ He wished, may I be many ; ’ 
is declared to have originated the entire creation ; and is 
finally referred to in the clause, ‘ Therefore the wise call 
it the true.’ Thereupon the text goes on to say, with 
reference to what has all along been the topic of discussion, 
' On this there is also this ^loka. Non-being indeed was 
this in the beginning,’ &c. If here the term ‘ Non-being’ 
denoted the absolutely Non-existent, the whole context 
would be broken; for while ostensibly referring to one 
matter the passage would in reality treat of a second 
altogether different matter, W e have therefore to conclude 
that, while the term ' Being ’ ordinarily denotes that which 
is differentiated by names and forms, the term ‘ Non-being ’ 
denotes the same substance previous to its differentiation, 
i. e. that Brahman is, in a secondary sense of the word, 
called Non-being, previously to the origination of the world. 
The same interpretation has to be applied to the passage 
‘ Non-being this was in the beginning’ {KJi. Up. HI, 19, i) ; 
for that passage also is connected with another passage which 
runs, ‘ It became being;’ whence it is evident that the ‘ Non- 
being’ of the former passage cannot mean absolute Non- 
existence. And in the passage, ‘ Others say, Non-being 
this was in the beginning’ {Kh. Up. VI, 2, i), the reference 
to the opinion of ' others ’ does not mean that the doctrine 
referred to (according to which the world was originally 
absolutely non-existent) is propounded somewhere in the 
Veda; for option is possible in the case of actions but not 
in the case of substances. The passage has therefore to 
be looked upon as a refutation of the tenet of primitive 
absolute non-existence as fancifully propounded by some 
teachers of inferior intelligence ; a refutation undertaken for 
the purpose of strengthening the doctrine that this world 
has sprung from that which is. — The following passage 
again, ‘Now this was then undeveloped,’ &c. (BrA Up. I, 
4, 7), does not by any means assert that the evolution of 



268 


vedanta-s6tras. 


the world took place without a ruler ; as we conclude from 
the circumstance of its being connected with another 
passage in which the ruler is represented as entering into 
the evolved world of effects, ‘ He entered thither to the 
very tips of the finger-nails/ &c. If it were supposed that 
the evolution of the world takes place without a ruler, to 
whom could the subsequent pronoun ‘he’ refer (in the 
passage last quoted) which manifestly is to be connected 
with something previously intimated? And as Scripture 
declares that the Self, after having entered into the body, 
is of the nature of intelligence (‘ when seeing, eye by name ; 
when hearing, ear by name ; when thinking, mind by 
name ’), it follows that it is intelligent at the time of its 
entering also. — We, moreover, must assume that the world 
was evolved at the beginning of the creation in the same 
way as it is at present seen to develop itself by names and 
forms, viz. under the rulership of an intelligent creator; 
for we have no right to make assumptions contrary to 
what is at present actually observed. Another scriptural 
passage also declares that the evolution of the world took 
place under the superintendence of a ruler, ‘ Let me now 
enter these beings with this living Self, and let me then 
evolve names and forms ’ {KJi. Up. VI, 3, 2). The in- 
transitive expression ‘ It developed itself ’ (vyakriyata ; 
it became developed) is to be viewed as having reference to 
the ease with which the real agent, viz. the Lord, brought 
about that evolution. Analogously it is said, for instance, 
that ‘the cornfield reaps itself’ (i. e. is reaped with the 
greatest ease), although there is the reaper sufficient (to 
account for the work being done). — Or else we may look 
on the form vydkriyata as having reference to a necessarily 
implied agent ; as is the case in such phrases as ‘ the village 
is being approached ’ (where we necessarily have to supply 
‘ by Devadatta or somebody else ’). 

16. (He whose work is this is Brahman), because 
(the ‘work’) denotes the world. 

In the Kaushitaki-brahmawa, in the dialogue of Baliki 
and A^atajatru, we read, ‘ O Balaki, he who is the maker of 



I ADHYAyA, 4 PADA, 1 6 . 


269 


those persons, he of whom this is the work, he alone is to be 
known’ (Kau. Up. IV, 19). The question here arises whether 
what is here inculcated as the object of knowledge is the 
individual soul or the chief vital air or the highest Self, 

The purvapakshin maintains that the vital air is meant. 
For, in the first place, he says, the clause ^ of whom this 
is the work’ points to the activity of motion, and that 
activity rests on the vital air. In the second place, we meet 
with the word ‘ pra^za ’ in a complementary passage (‘ Then 
he becomes one with that pra7/a alone ’), and that word 
is well known to denote the vital air. In the third place, 
pra;^a is the maker of all the persons, the person in the 
sun, the person in the moon, &c., who in the preceding part 
of the dialogue had been enumerated by Balaki ; for that 
the sun and the other divinities are mere differentiations of 
pra^^a we know from another scriptural passage, viz. ‘ Who 
is that one god (in whom all the other gods are contained)? 
Pra7^a and he is Brahman, and they call him That ’ (Bn. 
Up. Ill, 9, 9). — Or else, the purvapakshin continues, the 
passage under discussion represents the individual soul as 
the object of knowledge. For of the soul also it can be 
said that ‘ this is the work,’ if we understand by ‘ this ’ all 
meritorious and non-meritorious actions : and the soul also, 
in so far as it is the enjoyer, can be viewed as the maker 
of the persons enumerated in so far as they are instru- 
mental to the soul’s fruition. The complementary passage, 
moreover, contains an inferential mark of the individual 
soul. For A^ataj’atru, in order to instruct Balaki about 
the ^ maker of the persons ’ who had been proposed as the 
object of knowledge, calls a sleeping man by various names 
and convinces Baliki, by the circumstance that the sleeper 
does not hear his shouts, that the pra/za and so on are not 
the enjoyers ; he thereupon wakes the sleeping man by 
pushing him with his stick, and so makes Balaki compre- 
hend that the being capable of fruition is the individual 
soul which is distinct from the pra^^a. A subsequent passage 
also contains an infci'ential mark of the individual soul, viz. 
‘ And as the master feeds with his people, nay, as his people 
feed on the master, thus does this conscious Self feed with 



VEDANTA-SUTRAS, 


270 


the other Selfs, thus those Selfs feed on the conscious 
Self’ (Kan. Up. IV, 20). And as the individual soul is the 
support of the pra?^a, it may itself be called pra«a. — We 
thus conclude that the passage under discussion refers 
either to the individual soul or to the chief vital air; but 
not to the Lord, of whom it contains no inferential marks 
whatever. 

To this we make the following reply. — The Lord only 
can be the maker of the persons enumerated, on account 
of the force of the introductory part of the section. Balaki 
begins his colloquy with A^ata.ratru with the offer, ‘ Shall 
I tell you Brahman?’ Thereupon he enumerates some 
individual souls residing in the sun, the moon, and so on, 
which participate in the sight of the secondary Brahman, 
and in the end becomes silent. A^dta^atru then sets aside 
Bdldki’s doctrine as not referring to the chief Brahman — 
with the words, ' Vainly did you challenge me, saying, Shall 
I tell you Brahman,’ &c. — and proposes the maker of all 
those individual souls as a new object of knowledge. If 
now that maker also were merely a soul participating in 
the sight of the secondary Brahman, the introductory 
statement which speaks of Brahman would be futile. 
Hence it follows that the highest Lord himself is meant. — 
None, moreover, but the highest Lord is capable of being 
the maker of all those persons as he only is absolutely 
independent. — Further, the clause ‘of whom this is the 
work’ does not refer either to the activity of motion nor 
to meritorious and non-meritorious actions ; for neither 
of those two is the topic of discussion or has been men- 
tioned previously. Nor can the term ‘work’ denote the 
enumerated persons, since the latter are mentioned separ- 
ately — in the clause, ‘ He who is the maker of those per- 
sons’ — and as inferential marks (viz. the neuter gender and 
the singular number of the word karman, work) contradict 
that assumption. Nor, again, can the term ‘work’ denote 
either the activity whose object the persons are, or the 
result of that activity, since those two are already implied 
in the mention of the agent (in the clause, ‘ He who is the 
maker’). Thus there remains no other alternative than to 



I ADHYAyA, 4 PA DA, 17. 


271 


take the pronoun ' this ’ (in ‘ He of whom this is the work ’) 
as denoting the perceptible world and to understand the 
same world — as that which is made — by the term ‘ work/ 
— We may indeed admit that the world also is not the 
previous topic of discussion and has not been mentioned 
before ; still, as no specification is mentioned, we conclude 
that the term ‘ work ’ has to be understood in a general 
sense, and thus denotes what first presents itself to the 
mind, viz. everything which exists in general. It is, more- 
over, not true that the world is not the previous topic of 
discussion ; we are rather entitled to conclude from the cir- 
cumstance that the various persons (in the sun, the moon, 
&c.) which constitute a part of the world had been specially 
mentioned before, that the passage in question is concerned 
.with the whole world in general. The conjunction ‘ or’ (in 
‘ or he of whom,’ &c.) is meant to exclude the idea of limited 
makership ; so that the whole passage has to be inter- 
preted as follow.s, ‘ He who is the maker of those persons 
forming a part of the world, or rather — to do away with 
this limitation — he of whom this entire world without any 
exception is the work.’ The special mention made of the 
persons having been created has for its purpose to show 
that those persons whom Bdlaki had proclaimed to be 
Brahman are not Brahman. The passage therefore sets 
forth the maker of the world in a double aspect, at first as 
the creator of a special part of the world and thereupon as 
the creator of the whole remaining part of the world ; a way 
of speaking analogous to such every-day forms of ex- 
pression as, ‘ The wandering mendicants are to be fed, and 
then the Brahma??as h’ And that the maker of the world 
is the highest Lord is affirmed in all Veddnta-texts. 

17. If it be said that this is not so, on account of 
the inferential marks of the individual soul and the 
chief vital air ; we reply that that has already been 
explained. 


By the Biahmawas being meant all those Brahnia;zas who are 
not at the same time wandering mendicants.' 



VEDANTA-StjTRAS. 


272 


It remains for us to refute the objection that on account 
of the inferential marks of the individual soul and the 
chief vital air, which are met with in the complementary- 
passage, either the one or the other must be meant in the 
passage under discussion, and not the highest Lord. — We 
therefore remark that that objection has already been 
disposed of under I, i, 31. There it was shown that from 
an interpretation similar to the one here proposed by the 
purvapakshin there would result a threefold meditation 
one having Brahman for its object, a second one directed 
on the individual soul, and a third one connected with the 
chief vital air. Now the same result would present itself 
in our case, and that would be unacceptable as we must 
infer from the introductory as well as the concluding 
clauses, that the passage under discussion refers to Brah- 
man. With reference to the introductory clause this has 
been already proved ; that the concluding passage also 
refers to Brahman, we infer from the fact of there being 
stated in it a pre-eminently high reward, ‘ Warding off all 
evil he who knows this obtains pre-eminence among all 
beings, sovereignty, supremacy.’ — But if this is so, the 
sense of the passage under discussion is already settled by 
the discussion of the passage about Pratarda/^a (I, i, 31); 
why, then, the present Sutra? — No, we reply; the sense of 
our passage is not yet settled, since under I, i, 31 it has 
not been proved that the clause, ‘ Or he whose work is this/ 
refers to Brahman. Hence there arises again, in con- 
nexion with the present passage, a doubt whether the 
individual soul and the chief vital air may not be meant, 
and that doubt has again to be refuted. — The word prd«a 
occurs, moreover, in the sense of Brahman, so in the passage, 

‘ The mind settles down on pra^za ’ {Kh. Up. VI, 8, 2). — 
The inferential marks of the individual soul also have, on 
account of the introductory and concluding clauses referring 
to Brahman, to be explained so as not to give rise to any 
discrepancy. 

18. But (Taimini thinks that (the reference to the 
individual soul) has another purport, on account of 



I ADHYIyA, 4 PADA, 1 8 . 


273 


the question and answer ; and thus some also (read 
in their text). 

Whether the passage under discussion is concerned with 
the individual soul or with Brahman, is, in the opinion of 
the teacher 6'aimini, no matter for dispute, since the 
reference to the individual soul has a different purport, i.e. 
aims at intimating Brahman. He founds this his opinion 
on a question and a reply met with in the text. After 
A^atai-atru has taught Balaki, by waking the sleeping 
man, that the soul is different from the vital air, he asks 
the following question, ‘ Baldki, where did this person here 
sleep ? Where was he ? Whence came he thus back ? ’ 
This question clearly refers to something different from the 
individual soul. And so likewise does the reply, * When 
sleeping he sees no dream, then he becomes one with that 
pra7^a alone ; ’ and, ‘ From that Self all pra/^as proceed, each 
towards its place, from the prd;2as the gods, from the gods 
the worlds.’ — Now it is the general Vedanta doctrine that 
at the time of deep sleep the soul becomes one with the 
highest Brahman, and that from the highest Brahman the 
whole world proceeds, inclusive of pi'A/m, and so on. When 
Scripture therefore represents as the object of knowledge 
that in which there takes place the deep sleep of the soul, 
characterised by absence of consciousness and utter tran- 
quillity, i,e. a state devoid of all those specific cognitions 
which are produced by the limiting adjuncts of the soul, 
and from which the soul returns when the sleep is broken ; 
we understand that the highest Self is meant. — Moreover, 
the Vi^asaneyhdkhi, which likewise contains the colloquy 
of Baldki and A^ntajatru, clearly refers to the individual 
soul by means of the term, ‘ the person consisting of cog- 
nition ’ (vi^?1inamaya), and distinguishes from it the highest 
Self (‘ Where was then the person consisting of cognition ? 
and from whence did he thus come back?’ Bn. Up. II, i, 
16) ; and later on, in the reply to the above question, 
declares that ‘ the person consisting of cognition lies in the 
ether within the heart.’ Now we know that the word ‘ ether ’ 
may be used to denote the highest Self, as, for instance, in 
C 34 ] T 




2 74 


VEDANTA-SLFTRAS. 


the passage about the small ether within the lotus of the 
heart {Kh. Up. VIII, i, i). Further on the Bn, Up. says, 

‘ All the Selfs came forth from that Self ; ’ by which state- 
ment of the coming forth of all the conditioned Selfs it 
intimates that the highest Self is the one general cause. 
— 7'he doctrine conveyed by the rousing of the sleeping 
person, viz. that the individual soul is different from the 
vital air, furnishes at the same time a further argument 
against the opinion that the passage under discussion refers 
to the vital air. 

19. (The Self to be seen, to be heard, &c. is the 
highest Self) on account of the connected meaning 
of the sentences. 

We read in the Brfhaddra/^yaka, in the Maitreyi-brdh- 
mawa the following passage, ‘ Verily, a husband is not dear 
that you may love the husband, Sic. &c. ; verily, everything 
is not dear that you may love everything; but that you 
may love the Self therefore everything is dear. Verily, the 
Self is to be seen, to be heard, to be perceived, to be 
marked, 0 Maitreyi ! When the Self has been seen, heard, 
perceived, and known, then all this is known ’ (Bn*. Up. IV, 
5 , 6 ). — Here the doubt arises whether that which is repre- 
sented as the object to be seen, to be heard, and so on, is 
the cognitional Self (the individual soul) or the highest 
Self. — But whence the doubt? — Because, we reply, the 
Self is, on the one hand, by the mention of dear things such 
as husband and so on, indicated as the enjoyer whence it 
appears that the passage refers t,o the individual soul ; and 
because, on the other hand, the declaration that through the 
knowledge of the Self everything becomes known points to 
the highest Self. 

The purvapakshin maintains that the passage refers to 
the Individual soul, on account of the strength of the initial 
statement. The text declares at the outset that all the. 
objects of enjoyment found in this world, such as husband, 
wife, riches, and so on, are dear on account of the Self, and 
thereby gives us to understand that the enjoying (i.e. the 



275 


I ADHYAYA, 4 pIdA, 1 9. 

individual) Self is meant ; if thereupon it refers to the Self 
as the object of sight and so on, what other Self should it 
mean than the same individual Self ? — A subsequent passage 
also (viz. ‘ Thus does this great Being, endless, unlimited> 
consisting of nothing but knowledge, rise from out of these 
elements, and vanish again after them. When he has departed 
there is no more knowledge’), which describes how the 
great Being under discussion rises, as the Self of knowledge, 
from the elements, shows that the object of sight is no 
other than the cognitional Self, i.e. the individual soul. 
The concluding clause finally, ‘ How, O beloved, should he 
know the knower ? ’ shows, by means of the term ‘ knower,’ 
which denotes an agent, that the individual soul is meant. 
The declaration that through the cognition of the Self 
everything becomes known must therefore not be inter- 
preted in the literal sense, but must be taken to mean that 
the world of objects of enjoyment is known through its 
relation to the enjoying soul. 

To this we make the following reply. — The passage 
makes a statement about the highest Self, on account of 
the connected meaning of the entire section. If we consider 
the different passages in their mutual connexion, we find 
that they all refer to the highest Self. After Maitreyi has 
heard from Ya^«avalkya that there is no hope of immor- 
tality by wealth, she expresses her desire of immortality in 
the words, ‘ What should I do with that by which I do not 
become immortal? What my Lord knoweth tell that to 
me ; ’ and thereupon Ya^^^avalkya expounds to her the 
knowledge of the Self. Now Scripture as well as Smrfti 
declares that immortality is not to be reached but through 
the knowledge of the highest Self. — The statement further 
that through the knowledge of the Self everything becomes 
known can be taken in its direct literal sense only if by the 
Self we understand the highest cause. And to take it in a 
non-literal sense (as the purvapakshin proposes) is inad- 
missible, on account of the explanation given of that state- 
ment in a subsequent passage, viz. ‘Whosoever looks for 
the Brahman class elsewhere than in the Self, is aban- 
doned by the Brahman class.’ Here it is said that who- 

T 2 



276 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


ever erroneously views this world with its Brahmans and so 
on, as having an independent existence apart from the Self, 
is abandoned by that very world of which he has taken an 
erroneous view ; whereby the view that there exists any 
difference is refuted. And the immediately subsequent 
clause, ‘ This everything is the Self,’ gives us to understand 
that the entire aggregate of existing things is non-different 
from the Self ; a doctrine further confirmed by the similes 
of the drum and so on. — By explaining further that the 
Self about which he had been speaking is the cause of the 
universe of names, forms, and works (‘There has been 
breathed forth from this great Being what we have as Rig- 
veda,’ &c.) Y4^;7avalkya again shows that it is the highest 
Self. — To the same conclusion he leads us by declaring, in 
the paragraph which treats of the natural centres of things, 
that the Self is the centre of the whole world with the 
objects,- the senses and the mind, that it has neither inside 
nor outside, that it is altogether a mass of knowledge. — 
From all this it follows that what the text represents as the 
object of sight and so on is the highest Self. 

We now turn to the remark made by the purvapakshin 
that the passage teaches the individual soul to be the 
object of sight, because it is, in the early part of the chapter, 
denoted as something dear. 

20 . (The circumstance of the soul being repre- 
sented as the object of sight) indicates the fulfil- 
ment of the promissory statement; so A^-marathya 
thinks. 

The fact that the text proclaims as the object of sight 
that Self which is denoted as something dear indicates 
the fulfilment of the promise made in the passages, 

‘ When the Self is known all this is. known,’ ‘ All this is 
that Self.’ For if the individual soul were different from 
the highest Self, the knowledge -of the latter would not 
imply the knowledge of the former, and thus the promise 
that through the knowledge of one thing everything is 
to be known would not be fulfilled. Hence the initial 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 2 1. 


277 


statement aims at representing the individual Self and the 
highest Self as non-different for the purpose of fulfilling 
the promise made. — This is the opinion of the teacher 
Ai-marathya 

21. (The initial statement identifies the individual 
soul and the highest Self) because the soul when it 
^will depart (from the body) is such (i.e. one with the 
highest Self) ; thus Au^ulomi thinks. 

The individual soul which is inquinated by the contact 
with its different limiting adjuncts, viz. body, senses, and 
mind (mano-buddhi), attains through the instrumentality 
of knowledge, meditation, and so on, a state of complete 
serenity, and thus enables itself, when passing at some 
future time out of the body, to become one with the 
highest Self ; hence the initial statement in which it is 
represented as non-different from the highest Self. This 
is the opinion of the teacher Au^ulomi. — Thus Scrip- 
ture says, ‘ That serene being arising from this body 
appears in its own form as soon as it has approached 
the highest light’ {Kh. Up. VIII, 32, 3).— In another 
place Scripture intimates, by means of the simile of the 
rivers, that name and form abide in the individual soul, ‘ As 


^ The comment of the Bhamali on the Sfitra runs as follows : As 
the sparks issuing from a fire are not absolutely different from the 
fire, because they participate in the nature of the fire ; and, on the 
other hand, are not absolutely non-different from the fire, because 
in that case they could be distinguished neither from the fire nor 
from each other; so the individual souls also — which are effects 
of Brahman — are neither absolutely different from Biahman, for 
that would mean that they are not of the nature of intelligence ; 
nor absolutely non-different from Brahman, because in that case 
they could not be distinguished from each other, and because, if 
they were identical with Brahman and therefore omniscient, it 
would be useless to give them any instruction. Hence the 
individual souls are somehow different from. Brahman and some- 
how non-different. — The technical name of the doctrine here 
represented by A^marathya is bhedabhedavada. 



VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


278 


the flowing rivers disappear in the sea, having lost their 
name and their form, thus a wise man freed from name and 
form goes to the divine Person who is greater than the great ’ 
(Mu. Up. Ill, 3, 8). I.e. as the rivers losing the names and 
forms abiding in them disappear in the sea, so the individual 
soul also losing the name and form abiding in it becomes 
united with the highest person. That the latter half of the 
passage has the meaning here assigned to it, follows from 
the parallelism which we must assume to exist between the ' 
two members of the comparison 

22 . (The initial statement is made) because (the 
highest Self) exists in the condition (of the individual 
soul) ; so Ka^akrftsna thinks. 

Because the highest Self exists also in the condition of the 
individual soul, therefore, the teacher K^i'akrftsna thinks, the 
initial statement which aims at intimating the non-difference 
of the two is possible. That the highest Self only is that which 
appears as the individual soul, is evident from the Brdhma^^a- 
passage, ‘ Let me enter into them with this living Self and 
evolve names and forms,’ and similar passages. We have 
also mantras to the same effect, for instance, ‘ The wise one 
who, having produced all forms and made all names, sits 
calling the things by their names’ (Taitt. Ar. Ill, 13, 7) ^ 


^ Bhamati : The individual soul is absolutely different from the 
highest Self; it is inquinated by the contact with its different limiting 
adjuncts. But it is spoken of, in the Upanishad, as non-different 
from the highest Self because after having purified itself by means 
of knowledge and meditation it may pass out of the body and 
become one with the highest Self. The text of the Upanishad 
thus transfers a future state of non-difference to that time when 
difference actually exists. Compare the saying of the Pa 72 ;^arfitrikas ; 
‘ Up to the moment of emancipation being reached the soul and the 
highest Self are different. But the emancipated soul is no longer 
different from the highest Self, since there is no further cause of 
difference.’ — The technical name of the doctrine advocated by 
Au</ulomi is satyabhedavUda. 

^ Compare the note to the same mantra as quoted above under 
I, I, II. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 22 . 279 

And where Scripture relates the creation of fire and the 
other elements, it does not at the same time relate a sepa- 
rate creation of the individual soul ; we have therefore no 
right to look on the soul as a product of the highest Self? 
different from the latter. — In the. opinion of the teacher 
Ka.yakr2itsna the non-modified highest Lord himself is the 
individual soul, not anything else. Ai'marathya, although 
meaning to say that the soul is not (absolutely) different 
from the highest Self, yet intimates by the expression, 
‘ On account of the fulfilment of the promise ’ — which de- 
clares a certain mutual dependence — that there does exist 
a certain relation of cause and effect between the highest 
Self and the individual souL. The opinion of Auhulomi 
again clearly implies that the difference and non -difference 
of the two depend on difference of condition^. Of these 
three opinions we conclude that the one held by Ka^a- 
kn'tsna accords with Scripture, because it agrees with what 
all the Ved^nta-texts (so, for instance, the passage, ‘ That 
art thou’) aim at inculcating. Only on the opinion of 
Kdi'akr/tsna immortality can be viewed as the result of 
the knowledge of the soul ; while it would be impossible 
to hold the same view if the soul were a modification 
(product) of the Self and as such liable to lose its exist- 
ence by being merged in its causal substance. For the 
same reason, name and form cannot abide in the soul (as 
was above attempted to prove by means of the simile of the 
rivers), but abide in the limiting adjunct and are ascribed to 
the soul itself in a figurative sense only. For the same 
reason the origin of the souls from the highest Self, of 
which Scripture speaks in some places as analogous to the 
issuing of sparks from the fire, must be viewed as based 
only on the limiting adjuncts of the soul. 

The last three Sutras have further to be interpreted so as 
to furnish replies to the second of the pfirvapakshin’s argu- 
ments, viz. that the B 7 ''zliadara 72 yaka passage represents as 


^ And not the relation of absolute identity. 

® I.e. upon the state of emancipation and its absence. 



28 o 


vedAnta-s'Otras. 


the object of sight the individual soul, because it declares 
that the great Being which is to be seen arises from out of 
these elements. ‘There is an indication of the fulfilment 
of the promise; so Ajmarathya thinks/ The promise is 
made in the two passages, ‘ When the Self is known, all this 
is known/ and ‘ All this is that Self/ That the Self is every- 
thing, is proved by the declaration that the whole world of 
names, forms, and works springs from one being, and is 
merged in one being ^ ; and by its being demonstrated, with 
the help of the similes of the drum, and so on, that effect 
and cause are non-different. The fulfilment of the promise is, 
then, finally indicated by the text declaring that that great 
Being rises, in the form of the individual soul, from out of these 
•elements ; thus the teacher Ajrmarathya thinks. For if the 
soul and the highest Self are non-different, the promise that 
through the knowledge of one everything becomes known 
is capable of fulfilment. — ‘Because the soul when it will 
depart is such ; thus Au<Ailomi thinks.’ The statement as 
to the non-difference of the soul and the Self (implied in the 
declaration that the great Being rises, Szic.) is possible, 
because the soul when — after having purified itself by 
knowledge, and so on — it will depart from the body, is 
capable of becoming one with the highest Self. This 
is Au^ulomi’s opinion . — ‘ Because it exists in the con- 
dition of the soul ; thus Kdjakr/tsna opines/ Because 
the highest Self itself is that which appears as the indivi- 
dual soul, the statement as to the non-difference of the 
two is well-founded. This is the view of the teacher 
Kajakr/tsna. 

But, an objection may be raised, the passage, ‘ Rising from 
out of these elements he vanishes again after them. When 
he has departed there is no more knowledge,’ intimates the 
final destruction of the soul, not its identity with the highest 
Self!— -By no means, we reply. The passage means to say 


^ Upapadita?« X’eti, sarvasydtmamatratvam iti i-esha>^. Upapa- 
danaprakaraw sfi.^ayati eketi. Sa yath^rdrendhaiiSgner ityddinai- 
kaprasavatvam, yatha sarv^sam apam ilyadin^ X’aikapralayatva^z 
sarvasyoktam. An. Gi. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 pAdA, 2 2. 


281 


only that on the soul departing from the body all specific 
cognition vanishes, not that the Self is destroyed. For 
an objection being raised — in the passage, ‘ Here thou hast 
bewildered me, Sir, when thou sayest that having departed 
there is no more knowledge ’ — Scripture itself explains that 
what is meant is not the annihilation of the Self,' I say nothing 
that is bewildering. Verily, beloved, that Self is imperishable, 
and of an ‘indestructible nature. But there takes place non- 
connexion with the matris.’ That means : The eternally 
unchanging Self, which is one mass of knowledge, cannot 
possibly perish ; but by means of true knowledge there is 
effected its dissociation from the matras, i. e. the elements 
and the sense organs, which are the product of Nescience. 
When the connexion has been solved, specific cognition, 
which’ depended on it, no longer takes place, and thus it can 
be said, that ‘ When he has departed there is no more 
knowledge.’ 

The third argument also of the purvapakshin, viz. that 
the word ‘knower’ — which occurs in the concluding pas- 
sage, 'How should he knowt4ie knower?’ — denotes an agent, 
and therefore refers to the individual soul as the object of 
sight, is to be refuted according to the view of Ka.rak7^ftsna. — 
Moreover, the text after having enumerated — in the passage, 
‘For where there is duality as it were, there one sees the 
other,’ &c. — all the kinds of specific cognition which belong 
to the sphere of Nescience declares — in the subsequent 
passage, ‘ But when the Self only is all this, how should he 
see another?’ — that in the sphere of true knowledge all 
specific cognition such as seeing, and so on, is absent. And, 
again, in order to obviate the doubt whether in the absence 
of objects the knower might not know himself, Yd^/^avalkya 
goes on, ‘ How, O beloved, should he know himself, the 
knower?’ As thus the latter passage evidently aims at 
proving the absence of specific cognition, we have to con- 
clude that the word ‘knower’ is here used to denote that 
being which is knowledge, i. e. the Self. — That the view of 
K^j'akr/tsna is scriptural, we 'have already shown above. 
And as it is so, all the adherents of the Vedanta must admit 
that the difference of the soul and the highest Self is riot 



282 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


real, but due to the limiting adjuncts, viz. the body, and so 
on, which are the product of name and form as presented 
by Nescience. That view receives ample confirmation from 
Scripture ; compare, for instance, ‘ Being only, my dear, this 
was in the beginning, one, without a second ’ {Kh. Up. VI, 
3, i) ; ‘The Self is all this’ {Kh. Up. VII, 35, a) ; ‘Brahman 
alone is all this’ (Mu. Up. II, 3, ii) ; ‘This everything is 
that Self’ (Brz. Up. II, 4, 6); ‘There is no other seer but 
he ’ (Qri. Up. Ill, 7, 33) ; ‘ There is nothing that sees but it ’ 
(Bn. Up. Ill, 8, ii). — It is likewise confirmed by Smn'ti; 
compare, for instance, ‘Vasudeva is all this’ (Bha. Gi. 
VII, 19); ‘Know me, 0 Bh^rata, to be the soul in all 
bodies ’ (Bha. Gi. XIII, 2) ; ‘ He who sees the highest Lord 
abiding alike within all creatures’ (Bha. Gi. XIII, 37). 
— The same conclusion is supported by those passages 
which deny all difference; compare, for instance, ‘If he 
thinks, that is one and I another ; he does not know ’ (B;7. 
Up. I, 4, 10) ; ‘ From death to death he goes who sees here 
any diversity’ (Bn. Up. IV, 4, 19). And, again, by those 
passages which negative all change on the part of the Self ; 
compare, for instance, ‘ This great unborn Self, undecaying, 
undying, immortal, fearless is indeed Brahman ’ (Bn. Up. 
IV, 34). — Moreover, if the doctrine of general identity were 
not true, those who are desirous of release could not be in 
the possession of irrefutable knowledge, and there would be 
no possibility of any matter being well settled ; while yet 
the knowledge of which the Self is the object is declared to 
be irrefutable and to satisfy all desire, and Scripture speaks 
of those, ‘ Who have well ascertained the object of the 
knowledge of the Vedanta’ (Mn. Up. Ill, 3, 6). Compare 
also the passage, ‘ What trouble, what sorrow can there be 
to him who has once beheld that unity? ’ (Lc. Up. 7.) — And 
Smn'ti also represents the mind of him who contemplates 
the Self as steady (Bha. Gi. II, 54). 

As therefore the individual soul and the highest Self differ 
in name only, it being a settled matter that perfect know- 
ledge has for its object the absolute oneness of the two ; it 
is senseless to insist (as some do) on a pthrality of Selfs, and 
to maintain that the individual soul is different from the 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 23. 


283 


highest Self, and the highest Self from the individual soul. 
For the Self is indeed called by many different names, but 
it is one only. Nor does the passage, ^ He who knows 
Brahman which is real, knowledge, infinite, as hidden in the 
cave’ (Taitt. Up. IT, i), refer to some one cave (different 
from the abode of the individual soul) k And that nobody 
else but Brahman is hidden in the cave we know from a 
subsequent passage, viz. ‘ Having sent forth he entered into 
it’ (Taitt. Up. II, 6), according to which the creator only 
entered into the created beings. — Those who insist on the 
distinction of the individual and the highest Self oppose 
themselves to the true sense of the Vedanta-texts, stand 
thereby in the way of perfect knowledge, which is the door 
to perfect beatitude, and groundlessly assume release to be 
something effected, and therefore non-eternal k (And if 
they attempt to show that moksha, although effected, is 
eternal) they involve themselves in a conflict with sound 
logic. 

23. (Brahman is) the material cause also, on 
account of (this view) not being in conflict with 
the promissory statements and the illustrative in- 
stances. 

It has been said that, as practical religious duty has to 
be enquired into because it is the cause of an increase of 
happiness, so Brahman has to be enquired into because it is 
the cause of absolute beatitude. And Brahman has been 
defined as that from which there proceed the origination, 
sustentation, and retractation of this world. Now as this 
definition comprises alike the relation of substantial caus- 
ality in which clay and gold, for instance, stand to golden 
ornaments and earthen pots, and the relation of operative 

^ So according to Go, An. and An. Gi., although their inter- 
pretations seem not to account sufficiently for the ek^m of the text. 
— evaikam iti ^ivasthtlnad anyam ity artha/z. Go. An. — 
(xivabhavena pratibimbadharatiriktam ity artha/z. An. Gi. 

® While release, as often remarked, is eternal, it being in fact 
not different from the eternally unchanging Brahman. 



284 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


causality in which the potter and the goldsmith stand to 
the things mentioned ; a doubt arises to which of these 
two kinds the causality of Brahman belongs. 

The purvapakshin maintains that Brahman evidently is 
the operative cause of the world only, because Scripture 
declares his creative energy to be preceded by reflection. 
Compare, for instance, Pra. Up. VI, 3 ; 4 : ‘He reflected, he 
created pra;?a.’ For observation shows that the action of 
operative causes only, such as potters and the like, is pre- 
ceded by reflection, and moreover that the result of some 
activity is brought about by the concurrence of several 
factors h It is therefore appropriate that we should view 
the prime creator in the same light. The circumstance of 
his being known as ‘ the Lord ’ furnishes another argu- 
ment. For lords such as kings and the son of Vivasvat are 
known only as operative causes', and the highest Lord also 
must on that account be viewed as an operative cause 
only, — Further, the effect of the creator’s activity, viz. this 
world, is seen to consi-st of parts, to be non-intelligent and 
impure ; we therefore must assume that its cause also is of 
the same nature ; for it is a matter of general observation 
that cause and effect are alike in kind. But that Brahman 
does not resemble the world in nature, we know from many 
scriptural passages, such as ‘ It is without parts, without 
actions, tranquil, without fault, without taint’ Svc. Up. 
VI, 19). Hence there remains no other alternative but to 
admit that in addition to Brahman there exists a material 
cause of the world of impure nature, such as is known from 
Smnti^, and to limit the causality of Brahman, as declared 
by Scripture, to operative causality. 

To this we make the following reply. — Brahman is to be 
acknowledged as the material cause as well as the operative 
cause ; because this latter view does not conflict with the 
promissory statements and the illustrative instances. The 
promissory statement chiefly meant is the following one, 


^ I. e. that the operative cause and the substantial cause are 
separate things. 

® Viz. the Sdhkhya-sra/7ti. 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 23. 


285 


‘ Have you ever asked for that instruction by which that which 
is not heard becomes heard ; that which is not perceived, 
perceived ; that which is not known, known ?’ Up. VI, 
1, 3.) This passage intimates that through the cognition of 
one thing everything else, even if (previously) unknown, 
becomes known. Now the knowledge of everything is 
possible through the cognition of the material cause, since 
the effect is non-different from the material cause. On the 
other hand, effects are not non-different from their operative 
causes ; for we know from ordinary experience that the 
carpenter, for instance, is different from the house he has 
built. — The illustrative example referred to is the one 
mentioned {Kh. Up. VI, i, 4), ‘ My dear, as by one clod 
of clay all that is made of clay is known, the modification 
(i.e. the effect) being a name merely which has its origin in 
speech, while the truth is that it is clay merely ; ’ which 
passage again has reference to the material cause. ' The 
text adds a few more illustrative instances of similar 
nature, ‘ As by one nugget of gold all that is made of gold 
is known ; as by one pair of nail-scissors all that is made of 
iron is known.’ — Similar promissory statements are made 
in other places also, for instance, ‘What is that through 
which if it is known everything else becomes known ? ’ (Mu. 
Up. I, I, 3.) An illustrative instance also is given in the 
same place, ‘ As plants grow on the earth’ (I, i, 7). — Com- 
pare also the promissory statement in Brf. Up. IV, 5, 6, 

‘ When the Self has been seen, heard, perceived, and 
known, then all this is known ; ’ and the illustrative instance 
quoted (IV, 5, 8), ‘Now as the sounds of a drum if beaten 
cannot be seized externally, but the sound is seized when 
the drum is seized or the beater of the drum.’ — Similar 
promissory statements and illustrative instances which are 
to be found in all Vedinta-texts are to be viewed as 
proving, more or less, that Brahman is also the material 
cause of the world. The ablative case also in the passage, 

‘ That from whence (yata 4 ) these beings are born/ has to 
be considered as indicating the material cause of the beings, 
according to the grarnmatical rule, Pa;?. I, 4, 30. — That 
Brahman is at the same time the operative cause of the 



286 


VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


world, we have to conclude from the circumstance that 
there is no other guiding being. Ordinarily material causes, 
indeed, such as lumps of clay and pieces of gold, are 
dependent, in order to shape themselves into vessels and 
ornaments, on extraneous operative causes such as potters 
and goldsmiths ; but outside Brahman as material cause 
there is no other operative cause to which the material cause 
could look ; for Scripture says that previously to creation 
Brahman was one without a second. — The absence of a 
guiding principle other than the material cause can more- 
over be established by means of the argument made use of 
in the Sutra, viz. accordance with the promissory state- 
ments and the illustrative examples. If there were ad- 
mitted a guiding principle different from the material 
cause, it would follow that everything cannot be known 
through one thing, and thereby the promissory statements 
as well as the illustrative instances would be stultified. — ^The 
Self is thus the operative cause, because there is no other 
ruling principle, and the material cause because there is 
no other substance from which the world could originate. 

24. And on account of the statement of reflection 
(on the part of the Self). 

The fact of the sacred texts declaring that the Self 
reflected likewise shows that it is the operative as well as 
the material cause. Passages like ‘ He wished, may I be 
many, may I grow forth,’ and ‘ He thought, may I be many, 
may I grow forth,’ show, in the first place, that the Self is 
the agent in the independent activity which is preceded by 
the Self s reflection; and, in the second place, that it is the 
material cause also, since the words ‘May I be many’ 
intimate that the reflective desire of multiplying itself has 
the inward Self for its object. 

25. And on account of both (i, e. the origin and 
the dissolution of the world) being directly de- 
clared (to have Brahman for their material cause). 

This SMra supplies a further argument for Brahman’s 



I ADHYAYA, 4 PADA, 26. 


287 


being the general material cause. — Brahman is the material 
cause of the world for that reason also that the origination 
as well as the dissolution of the world is directly spoken 
of in the sacred texts as having Brahman for their material 
cause, ‘All these beings take their rise from the ether 
and return into the ether’ (/iT/^. Up. I, 9, i). That that 
from which some other thing springs and into which it 
returns is the material cause of that other thing is well 
known. ' Thus the earth, for instance, is the material cause 
of rice, barley, and the like, — The word ‘ directly ’ (in the 
Sutra) notifies that there is no other material cause, but that 
all this sprang from the ether only. — Observation further 
teaches that effects are not re-absorbed into anything else 
but their material causes. 

26. (Brahman is the material cause) on account 
of (the Self) making itself ; (which is possible) owing 
to modification. 

Brahman is the material cause for that reason also that 
Scripture — in the passage, ‘ That made itself its Self’ (Taitt. 
Up. II, 7) — represents the Self as the object of action as 
well as the agent. — But how can the Self which as agent 
was in full existence previously to the action be made out to 
be at the same time that which is effected by the action ? — 
Owing to modification, we reply. The Self, although in full 
existence previously to the action, modifies itself into some- 
thing special, viz. the Self of the effect. Thus we see that 
causal substances, such as clay and the like, are, by under- 
going the process of modification, changed into their pro- 
ducts. — The word ‘itself’ in the passage quoted intimates 
the absence of any other operative cause but the Self. 

The word ‘ parwdmat ’ (in the Sutra) may also be taken 
as constituting a separate Sutra by itself, the sense of 
which would be: Brahman is the material cause of the 
world for that reason also, that the sacred text speaks 
of Brahman and its modification into the Self of its effect 
as co-ordinated, viz. in the passage, ‘ It became sat and 
tyat, defined and undefined ’ (Taitt. Up. II, 6). 



288 


vedAnta-s^tras. 


27. And because Brahman is called the source. 

Brahman is the material cause for that reason also that it 
is spoken of in the sacred texts as the source (yoni) ; compare, 
for instance, ‘ The maker, the Lord, the person who has his 
source in Brahman’ (Mu. Up, III, i, 3); and 'That which 
the wise regard as the source of all beings’ (Mu. Up. I, i, 
6). For that the word 'source’ denotes the material cause 
is well known from the use of ordinary language ; the 
earth, for instance, is called the yoni of trees and herbs. 
In some places indeed the word yoni means not source, but 
merely place ; so, for instance, in the mantra, ‘A yoni, O 
Indra, was made for you to sit down upon ’ (T^z'k. 

I, 104, i). But that in the passage quoted it means ' source ’ 
follows from a complementary passage, ‘As the spider sends 
forth and draws in its threads,’ &c. — It is thus proved that 
Brahman is the material cause of the world. — Of the ob- 
jection, finally, that in ordinary life the activity of operative 
causal agents only, such as potters and the like, is preceded 
by reflection, we dispose by the remark that, as the matter 
in hand is not one which can be known through inferential 
reasoning, ordinary experience cannot be used to settle it. 
For the knowledge of that matter we rather depend on 
Scripture altogether, and hence Scripture only has to be 
appealed to. And that Scripture teaches that the Lord 
who reflects before creation is at the same time the material 
cause, we have already explained. The subject will, more- 
over, be discussed more fully later on. 

28. Hereby all (the doctrines concerning the 
origin of the world which are opposed to the 
Veddnta) are explained, are explained. 

The doctrine according to which the pradhana is the 
cause of the world has, in the Sutras beginning with I, 
I, 5, been again and again brought forward and refuted. 
The chief reason' for the special attention given to that 
doctrine is that the Vedanta-texts contain some passages 
which, to people deficient in mental penetration, may 
appear to contain inferential marks pointing to it. The 



I ADHyAyA, 4 PADA, 28 . 


289 


doctrine, moreover, stands somewhat near to the Vedanta 
doctrine since, like the latter, it admits the non-difference 
of cause and effect, and it, moreover, has been accepted by 
some of the authors of the Dharma-sutras, such as Devala, 
and so on. For all these reasons we have taken special 
trouble to refute the pradhdna doctrine, without paying 
much attention to the atomic and other theories. These 
latter theories, however, must likewise be refuted, as they 
also are opposed to the doctrine of Brahman being the 
general cause, and as slow-minded people might think that 
they also are referred to in some Vedic passages. Hence 
the Sutrakara formally extends, in the above Sutra, the 
refutation already accomplished of the pradhana doctrine 
to all similar doctrines which need not be demolished in 
detail after their great protagonist, the pradhana doctrine, 
has been so completely disposed of. They also are, firstly, 
not founded on any scriptural authority ; and are, secondly, 
directly contradicted by various Vedic passages. — The 
repetition of the phrase ‘ are explained ’ is meant to in- 
timate that the end of the adhyaya has been reached. 


[34] 


U 



SECOND ADHYAYA. 

FIRST PAdA. 

Reverence to the highest Self ! 

I. If it be objected that (from the doctrine ex- 
pounded hitherto) there would result the fault of 
there being no room for (certain) Smrftis ; we do 
not admit that objection, because (from the rejection 
of our doctrine) there would result the fault of want 
of room for other Sm;^Ais. 

It has been shown in the first adhyiya that the omniscient 
Lord of all is the cause of the origin of this world in the 
same way as clay is the material cause of jars and gold of 
golden ornaments ; that by his rulership he is the cause of 
the subsistence of this world once originated, just as the 
magician is the cause of the subsistence of the magical 
illusion; and that he, lastly, is the cause of this emitted 
world being finally reabsorbed into his essence, just as the 
four classes of creatures are reabsorbed into the earth. It 
has further been proved, by a demonstration of the connected 
meaning of all the Vedanta-texts, that the Lord is the Self 
of all of us. Moreover, the doctrines of the pradhdna, and 
so on, being the cause of this world have been refuted as 
not being scriptural. — The purport of the second adhydya, 
which we now begin, is to refute the objections (to the 
doctrine established hitherto) which might be founded on 
Smnti and Reasoning, and to show that the doctrines of the 
pradlidna, &c. have only fallacious arguments to lean upon, 
and that the different Vedanta-texts do not contradict one 
another with regard to the mode of creation and similar 
topics. — The first point is to refute the objections based on 
Smnti. 

Your doctrine (the purvapakshin says) that the omniscient 



II ADHYAYA, I pAdA, I. 


291 


Brahman only is the cause of this world cannot be main- 
tained, ‘ because there results from it the fault of there 
being no room for (certain) Smrftis.' Such Smrztis are the 
one called Tantra which was composed by a nshi and 
is accepted by authoritative persons, and other Smrz'tis 
based on it ; for all of which there would be no room if 
your interpretation of the Veda were the true one. For 
they all teach that the non-intelligent pradhina is the 
independent cause of the world. There is indeed room (a 
raison d’etre) for Smrztis like the Manu-smrzti, which 
give information about matters connected with the whole 
body of religious duty, characterised by injunction ^ and 
comprising the agnihotra and similar performances. They 
tell us at what time and with what rites the members of the 
different castes are to be initiated ; how the Veda has to be 
studied ; in what way the cessation of study has to take 
place ; how marriage has to be performed, and so on. They 
further lay down the manifold religious duties, beneficial to 
man, of the four castes and ii-ramas The Kipila Smrzti, 
on the other hand, and similar books are not concerned with 
things to be done, but were composed with exclusive refer- 
ence to perfect knowledge as the means of final release. If 
then no room were left for them in that connexion also, they 
would be altogether purposeless ; and hence we must explain 
the Vedanta-texts in such a manner as not to bring them 
into conflict with the Smrz'tis mentioned — But how, some- 
body may ask the purvapakshin, can the eventual fault of 
there being left no room for certain Smrztis be used as an 
objection against that sense of ^'ruti which — from various 

^ The Smrfd called Tantra is the Sahkhyajastra as taught by 
Kapila ; the Smmi-writers depending on him are Asuri, Pa?7/(’ajikha, 
and others. 

® Mimizzzsa Su. I, i, 2 ; /(’odanalakshawo^rrtho dharma/z. Com- 
mentary : iodanS iti kxiyayi.^ pravartakaz;/ va-^anam ihu/z. 

® Purushirtha ; in opposition to the rules referred to in the 
preceding sentence which are kratvartha, i. e. the acting according 
to which secures the proper performance of certain rites. 

^ It having been decided by the Purvi MlmSwsd already that 
Smrztis contradicted by /Aruti are to be disregarded. 

U 2 



292 


,VEDANTA-SUTRAS. 


reasons as detailed under I, i and ff. — has been ascertained 
by us to be the true one, viz. that the omniscient Brahman 
alone is the cause of the world ? — Our objection, the pur- 
vapakshin replies, will perhaps not appear valid to persons 
of independent thought ; but as most men depend in their 
reasonings on others, and are unable to ascertain by them- 
selves the sense of 5ruti, they naturally rely on Smn'tis, 
composed by celebrated authorities, and try to arrive at the 
sense of .Sruti with their assistance ; while, owing to their 
esteem for the authors of the Smntis, they have no trust in 
our explanations. The knowledge of men like Kapila 
Smr/ti declares to have been nshi-like and unobstructed, 
and moreover there is the following 5ruti-passage, ‘ It is he 
who, in the beginning, bears in his thoughts the son, the 
rfshi, kapila whom he wishes to look on while he is born ' 
(Svc. Up. V, 2 ). Hence their opinion cannot be assumed 
to be erroneous, and as they moreover strengthen their 
position by argumentation, the objection remains valid, and 
we must therefore attempt to explain the Veddnta-texts in 
conformity with the Smn'tis. 

This objection we dispose of by the remark, ‘ It is not so 
because therefrom would result the fault of want of room 
for other Smn'tis.’ — If you object to the doctrine of the Lord 
being the cause of the world on the ground that it would 
render certain Smn’tis purposeless, you thereby render 
purposeless other Smn'tis which declare themselves in 
favour of the said doctrine. These latter Smn’ti-texts we 
will quote in what follows. In one passage the highest 
Brahman is introduced as the subject of discussion, ‘ That 
which is subtle and not to be known ; ’ the text then goes 
on, ' That is the internal Self of the creatures, their soul,’ 
and after that remarks ‘ From that sprang the Unevolved, 
consisting of the three gu«as, 0 best of Br^hmawas.’ 
And in another place it is said that ‘the Unevplved is 


^ On the meaning of ‘ kapila ’ in the above passage, compare the 
Introduction to the Upanishads, translated by Max Muller, vol. ii^ 
p. xxxviii ff.— As will be seen later on, .Sankara, in this bhtshya, 
takes the Kapila referred to to be some r/shi. 



II ADHYAYA, I PADA, I. 


293 


dissolved in the Person devoid of qualities, O Brdh- 
raa7^a.’ — Thus we read also in the Pura;^a, ‘ Hear thence 
this short statement: The ancient Naraya;^a is all this; 
he produces the creation at the due time, and at the 
time of reabsorption he consumes it again.’ And so 
in the Bhagavadgitd also (VII, 6), * I am the origin and 
the place of reabsorption of the whole world.’ And 
Apastamba too says with reference to the highest Self, 
‘ From him spring all bodies ; he is the primary cause, 
he is eternal, he is unchangeable ’ (Dharma Sutra I, 8, 
23, 2). In this way Smr?ti, in many places, declares the 
Lord to be the efficient as well as the material cause 
of the world. As the piirvapakshin opposes us on the 
ground of Smnti, we reply to him on the ground of Smr2ti 
only ; hence the line of defence taken up in the Sutra. Now 
it has been shown already that the S'ruti-texts aim at con- 
veying the doctrine that the Lord is the universal cause, and 
as wherever different Smrftis conflict those maintaining one 
view must be accepted, while those which maintain the 
opposite view must be set aside, those SmrAis which follow 
vS’ruti are to be considered as authoritative, while all others 
are to be disregarded ; according to the Sutra met with in 
the chapter treating of the means of proof (Mlm. Sutra I, 3, 
3), ‘ Where there is contradiction (between Friiti and Smrfti) 
(Smr/ti) is to be disregarded ; in case of there being no 
(contradiction) (SmWti is to be recognised) as there is infer- 
ence (of Smr2ti being founded on .Sruti).’ — Norcauwe assume 
that some persons are able to perceive supersensuous matters 
without vSruti, as there exists no efficient cause for such per- 
ception. Nor, again, can it be said that such perception 
may be assumed in the case of Kapila and others who 
possessed supernatural powers, and consequently unob- 
structed power of cognition. For the possession of super- 
natural powers itself depends on the performance of religious 
duty, and religious duty is that which is characterised by 
injunction ^ ; hence the sense of injunctions (i. e. of the Veda) 


^ 1. e. religious duty is known only from the injunctive passages 
of the Veda. 




294 VEDANTA-StJTRAS. 


which is established first must not be fancifully interpreted 
in reference to the dicta of men ‘established’ (i. e. made 
perfect, and therefore possessing supernatural powers) after- 
wards only. Moreover, even if those ‘ perfect ’ men were 
accepted as authorities to be appealed to, still, as there are 
many such perfect men, we should have, in all those cases 
where the Smntis contradict each other in the manner 
described, no other means of final decision than an appeal 
to vSruti. — As to men destitute of the power of inde- 
pendent judgment, we are not justified in assuming that 
they will without any reason attach themselves to some 
particular Smnti ; for if men’s inclinations were so alto- 
gether unregulated, truth itself would, owing to the 
multiformity of human opinion, become unstable. We 
must therefore try to lead their judgment in the 
right way by pointing out to them the conflict of the 
Smn'tis, and the distinction founded on some of them 
following 5ruti and others not. — The scriptural passage 
which the pflrvapakshin has quoted as proving the eminence 
of Kapila’s knowledge would not justify us in believing in 
such doctrines of Kapila (i. e. of some Kapila) as are contrary 
to Scripture ; for that passage mentions the bare name of 
Kapila (without specifying which Kapila is meant), and we 
meet in tradition with another Kapila, viz. the one who 
burned the sons of Sagara and had the surname Vdsudeva. 
That passage, moreover, serves another purpose, (viz. the 
establishment of the doctrine of the highest Self,) and has on 
that account no force to prove what is not proved by any 
other means, (viz. the supereminence of Kapila’s know- 
ledge.) On the other hand, we have a Aruti-passage which 
proclaims the excellence of Manu^, viz. ‘Whatever Manu 
said is medicine ’ (Taitt. Sawh. II, a, lo, 2 ). Manu himself, 
where he glorifies the seeing of the one Self in everything 
(‘ he who equally sees the Self in all beings and all beings 
in the Self, he as a sacrificer to the Self attains self- 


^ After it has been shown that Kapila the dvaitavadin is not 
mentioned in Aruti, it is now shown that Manu the sarvdtmavddin is 
mentioned there. 



II adhyAya, I pAda, 2. 


295 


luminousness/ i. e. becomes Brahman, Manu Smrzti XII, 
91), implicitly blames the doctrine of Kapila. For Kapila, 
by acknowledging a plurality of Selfs, does not admit the 
doctrine of there being one universal Self. In the Maha- 
bharata also the question is raised whether there are many 
persons (souls) or one ; thereupon the opinion of others is 
mentioned, ‘ There are many persons, O King, according to 
the S^hkhya and Yoga philosophers ; ’ that opinion is contro- 
verted ‘ just as there is one place of origin, (viz. the earth,) 
for many persons, so I will proclaim to you that universal 
person raised by his qualities ; ’ and, finally, it is declared 
that there is one universal Self, ‘ He is the internal Self of 
me, of thee, and of all other embodied beings, the internal 
witness of all, not to he apprehended by any one. He the 
all-headed, all-armed, all-footed, all-eyed, all-nosed one 
moves through all beings according to his will and 
liking.’ And Scripture also declares that there is one 
universal Self, ‘ When to a man who understands the Self 
has become all things, what sorrow, what trouble can 
there be to him who once beheld that unity ? ’ (Ij-, Up. 

7); and other similar passages. All which proves that the 
system of Kapila contradicts the Veda, and the doctrine of 
Manu who follows the Veda, by its hypothesis of a plurality 
of Selfs also, not only by the assumption of an independent 
pradhana. The authoritativeness of the Veda with regard 
to the matters stated by it is independent and direct, just 
as the light of the sun is the direct means of our knowledge 
of form and colour ; the authoritativeness of human dicta, on 
the other hand, is of an altogether different kind, as it 
depends on an extraneous basis (viz. the Veda), and is (not 
immediate but) mediated by a chain of teachers and 
tradition. 

Hence the circumstance that the result (of our doctrine) 
is want of room for certain Smraftis, with regard to matters 
contradicted by the Veda, furnishes no valid objection. — 
An additional reason for this our opinion is supplied by the 
following Stitra. 

2. And on account of the non-perception of the 



296 vedAnta-sOtkas. 

others (i. e. the effects of the pradhana, according 
to the Siiikhya system). 

The principles different from the pradhana, but to be 
viewed as its modifications which the (Sahkhya) Smn'ti 
assumes, as, for instance, the great principle^, are perceived 
neither in the Veda nor in ordinary experience. Now things 
of the nature of the elements and the sense organs, which 
are well known from the Veda, as well as from experience, 
may be referred to in Smr/ti ; but with regard to things which, 
like Kapila’s great principle, are known neither from the Veda 
nor from experience — no more than, for instance, the objects 
of a sixth sense — Smrzti is altogether impossible. That some 
scriptural passages which apparently refer to such things 
as the great principle have in reality quite a different 
meaning has already been shown under I, 4, i. But if 
that part of Smr/ti which is concerned with the effects 
(i. c. the great principle, and so on) is without authority, 
the part which refers to the cause (the pradhana) will be 
so likewise. This is what the Sutra means to say. — We 
have thus established a second reason, proving that the 
circumstance of there being no room left for certain Smn'tis 
does not constitute a valid objection to our doctrine. — The 
weakness of the trust in reasoning (apparently favouring 
the Sahkhya doctrine) will be shown later on under II, i, 
4ff. 


3. Thereby the Yoga (Smrfti) is refuted. 

This Sutra extends the application of the preceding argu- 
mentation, and remarks that by the refutation of the 
Sahkhya-sm«ti the Yoga-smnti also is to be considered 
as refuted ; for the latter also assumes, in opposition to 
Scripture, a pradhana as the independent cause of the world, 
and the ‘ great principle,’ &c. as its effects, although neither 
the Veda-nor common experience favour these views. — But, 
if the same reasoning applies to the Yoga also, the latter 
system is already disposed of by the previous arguments ; 
of what use then is it formally to extend them to the 
Yoga? (as the Sutra does.) — W^e reply that here an ad- 



II ADHYAYA, I PAD A, 3. 


297 


ditionai cause of doubt presents itself, the practice of Yoga 
being enjoined in the Veda as a means of obtaining perfect 
knowledge ; so, for instance, Brz. Up. II, 4, ‘(The Self) is 
to be heard, to be thought, to be meditated upon In 
the S'vetaj’vatara Upanishad, moreover, we find various in- 
junctions of Yoga-practice connected with the assumption 
of different positions of the body, &c. ; so, for instance, 

‘ Holding his body with its three erect parts even,’ &c. (II, 8). 

Further, we find very many passages in the Veda which 
(without expressly enjoining it) point to the Yoga, as, for 
instance, Ka. Up. II, 6, ii, ‘This, the firm holding back of 
the senses, is what is called Yoga;’ ‘Having received this 
knowledge and the whole rule of Yoga ’ (Ka. Up. II, 6, 
18) ; and so on. And in the Yoga-.sastra itself the passage, 

‘ Now then Yoga, the means of the knowledge of truth,’ &c. 
defines the Yoga as a means of reaching perfect knowledge. 
As thus one topic of the jastra at least (viz. the practice 
of Yoga) is shown to be authoritative, the entire Yoga- 
sm;.7ti will have to be accepted as unobjectionable, just 
as the Smrki referring to the ash/akas — To this we reply 
that the formal extension (to the Yoga, of the arguments 
primarily directed against the Sankhya) has the purpose 
of removing the additional doubt stated in the above lines ; 
for in spite of a part of the Yoga-sm^'fti being authoritative, 
the disagreement (between Smrzti and .Sruti) on other topics 
remains as shown above. — Although ^ there are many 
Sm/'ftis treating of the soul, w'e have singled out for refu- 
tation the Sankhya and Yoga because they are widely 
known as offering the means for accomplishing the highest 

' ^ In which passage the phrase ‘ to be meditated upon ’ (nidi- 
dhjasa) indicates the act of mental concentration characteristic of 
the Yoga. 

^ The ash/akts (certain oblations to be made on the eighth days 
after the full moons of the seasons hemanta and .yifira) furnish the 
stock illustration for the doctrine of the Purva Mim. that Smrdi 
is authoritative in so far as it is based 'on -Sruti. 

® But why — it will be asked — do you apply yourself to the 
refutation of the Stnkhya and Yoga only, and not also to that of 
other Smrdis conflicting with the Veddnta views ? 


298 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


end of man and have found favour with many competent 
persons. Moreover, their position is strengthened by a 
Vedic passage referring to them, ‘He who has known 
that cause which is to be apprehended by Sihkhya and 
Yoga he is freed from all fetters ’ (Sve. Up. VI, 13). (The 
claims which on the ground of this last passage might be 
set up for the Sahkhya and Yoga-smntis in their entirety) 
we refute by the remark that the highest beatitude (the 
highest aim of man) is not to be attained by the know- 
ledge of the Sahkhya-smn'ti irrespective of the Veda, nor 
by the road of Yoga-practice. For Scripture itself declares 
that there is no other means of obtaining the highest beati- 
tude but the knowledge of the unity of the Self which is 
conveyed by the Veda, ‘ Over death passes only the man 
who knows him ; there is no other path to go ’ (Sve. Up. 
Ill, 8), And the SAhkhya and Yoga-systems maintain 
duality, do not discern the unity of the Self. In the 
passage quoted (‘ That cause which is to be apprehended 
by Sihkhya and Yoga ’) the terms ‘ Sdhkhya ’ and ‘ Yoga ’ 
denote Vedic knowledge and meditation, as we infer from 
proximity^. We willingly allow room for those portions 
of the two systems which do not contradict the Veda. In 
their description of the soul, for instance, as free from all 
qualities the Sdhkhyas are in harmony with the Veda 
which teaches that the person (piiriisha) is essentially pure ; 
cp. Bn. Up. IV, 3, 16, ‘For that person is not attached to 
anything.’ The Yoga again in giving rules for the con- 
dition of the wandering religious mendicant admits that 
state of retirement from the concerns of life which is known 
from scriptural passages such as the following one, ‘ Then 
the parivrA^ka with discoloured (yellow) dress, shaven) 
without any possessions,’ &c. (UAbdla Upan. IV). 

The above remarks will serve as a reply to the claims 
of all argumentative Smntis. If it be* said that those 
Smntis also assist, by argumentation and proof, the cogni- 
tion of truth, we do not object to so much, but we maintain 


^ I. e. from the fact of these terms being employed in a passage 
standing close to other passages which refer to Vedic knowledge. 




II ADHYAyA, I PAD A, 4. 


299 


all the same that the truth can be known from the Vedanta- 
texts only ; as is stated by scidptural passages such as 
‘ None who does not know the Veda perceives that great 
one’ (Taitt. Br. Ill, 13, 9, 7) ; ‘I now ask thee that person 
taught in the Upanishads’ Up. Ill, 9,36) ; and others. 

4. (Brahman can)not (be the cause of the world) 
on account of the difference of character of that, 
(viz. the world) ; and its being such, (1. e. different 
from Brahman) (we learn) from Scripture. 

The objections, founded on Smrfti, against the doctrine 
of Brahman being the efficient and the material cause of 
this world have been refuted ; we now proceed to refute 
those founded on Reasoning. — But (to raise an objection at 
the outset) how is there room for objections founded on 
Reasoning after the sense of the sacred texts has once been 
settled ? The sacred texts are certainly to be considered 
absolutely authoritative with regard to Brahman as well 
as with regard to religious duty (dharma). — (To this the 
phrvapakshin replies), The analogy between Brahman and 
dharma would hold good if the matter in hand were to be 
known through the holy texts only, and could not be ap- 
proached by the other means of right knowledge also. 
In the case of religious duties, i. e, things to be done, we 
indeed entirely depend on Scripture. But now we are 
concerned with Brahman which is an accomplished existing 
thing, and in the case of accomplished things there is room 
for other means of right knowledge also, as, for instance, 
the case of earth and the other elements shows. And 
just as in the case of several conflicting scriptural passages 
we explain all of them in such a manner as to make them 
accord with one, so .Sruti, if in conflict with other means 
of right knowledge, has to be bent so as to accord with 
the latter. Moreover, Reasoning, which enables us to infer 
something not actually perceived in consequence of its 
having a certain equality of attributes with what is actually 
perceived, stands nearer to perception than 6'ruti which 
conveys its sense by tradition merely. And the knowledge 



vedanta-sOtras. 


300 


of Brahman which discards Nescience and effects final 
release terminates in a perception (viz. the intuition-— 
sakshfitkara — of Brahman), and as such must be assumed 
to have a seen result (not an unseen one like dharma) 
Moreover, the scriptural passage, ‘ He is to be heard, to 
be thought/ enjoins thought in addition to hearing, and 
thereby shows that Reasoning also is to be resorted to 
with regard to Brahman. Hence an objection founded on 
Reasoning is set forth, ‘Not so, on account of the difference 
of nature of this (effect).’ — The Vedantic opinion that the 
intelligent Brahman is the material cause of this world 
is untenable because the effect would in that case be of 
an altogether different character from the cause. For 
this world, which the Vedantin considers as the effect 
of Brahman, is perceived to be non-inteliigent and im- 
pure, consequently different in character from Brahman; 
and Brahman again is declared by the sacred texts to be 
of a character different from the world, viz, intelligent 
and pure. But things of an altogether different character 
cannot stand to each other in the relation of material 
cause and effect. Such effects, for instance, as golden orna- 
ments do not have earth for their material cause, nor is 

^ The cognition of Brahman terminates in an act of anubhava ; 
hence as it has been shown that reasoning is more closely con- 
nected with anubhava than Nruti is, we have the right to apply 
reasoning to .Sruti. — Ananda Giri comments on the passage from 
anubhavavasanam as follows: brahmasakshdtkarasya mokshopfi- 
yatay4 prddhanydt tatra jabdad api parokshago>^arad aparokshar- 
thasadharmyagOi(’aras tarkosntarahgam iti tasyaiva balavatvam ily 
artha/^. Aitihyamatrewa pravMapdramparyam^trem parokshataj'eti 
yavat. Anubhavasya prMhanye tarkasyoktanydyena tasminn an- 
tarahgatvSd agamasya /ia bahirahgatvad anlarahgabahirahgayor 
antarahga?;z balavad ity nyayad ukta;/? tarkasya balavattvam. 
Anubhavapradhanyam tu nddydpi siddham ity t.yahkyahanubhaveti. 
Nanu Brahma^?1anawi vaidikatvdd dharmavad adrfsh/aphalam 
esh/avyaw tat kuto^syanubhavavaSEinavidyanivartakatvay;^ tatraha 
moksheti. Adhish/^Snas^kshalk^rasya ^uktyadi^/i^ne tadavidyatat- 
kdryanivartakatvadnsh/e/^, brahma^zltinasyapi tarkavardd asambha- 
vanddinirSsadv^rS s^kshStkdrfivasayinas tadavidyddinivartakatve- 
naiva muktihetuteti nddmh/aphalatety axihah. 




II ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 4. 3OI 


gold the material cause of earthen vessels ; but effects of 
an earthy nature originate from earth and effects of the 
nature of gold from gold. In the same manner this world, 
which is non-intelligent and comprises pleasure, pain, and 
dulness, can -only be the effect of a cause itself non-in- 
telligent and made up of pleasure, pain, and dulness ; but 
not of Brahman which is of an altogether different character. 
The difference in character of this world from Brahman 
must be understood to be due to its impurity and its want 
of intelligence. It is impui'e because being itself made 
up of pleasure, pain, and dulness, it is the cause of delight, 
grief, despondency, &c., and because it comprises in itself 
abodes of various "character such as heaven, hell, and so on. 
It is devoid of intelligence because it is obseiwed to stand 
to the intelligent principle in the relation of subserviency, 
being the instrument of its activity. For the relation of 
subserviency of one thing to another is not possible on 
the basis of equality - two lamps, for instance, cannot be 
said to be subservient to each other (both being equally 
luminous). — But, it will be said, an intelligent instrument 
also might be subservient to the enjoying soul; just as 
an intelligent servant is subservient to his master. — 
This analogy, we reply, does not hold good, because in the 
case of servant and master also only the non-intelligent 
element in the former is subservient to the intelligent 
master. For a being endowed with intelligence subserves 
another intelligent being only with the non-intelligent part 
belonging to it, viz. its internal organ, sense organs, &c. ; 
while in so far as it is intelligent itself it acts neither for 
nor against any other being. For the Sahkhyas are of 
opinion that the intelligent beings (i. e. the souls) are in- 
capable of either taking in or giving out anything^, and 
are non-active. 'Flence that only which is devoid of in- 
telligence can be an instrument. Nor ^ is there anything 

^ Niratij-aya/^, upa^anapayadharmajfinyatva^^ niratij-ayatvam. 
An. Gi. 

^ A sentence replying to the possible objection that the world, 
as being the effect of the intelligent Brahman, might itself be 
intelligent. 



302 


vedAnta-sOtras. 


to show that things like pieces of wood and clods of earth 
are of an intelligent nature ; on the contrary, the dichotomy 
of all things which exist into such as are intelligent and 
such as are non-intelligent is well established. This world 
therefore cannot have its material cause in Brahman from 
which it is altogether different in character. — Here some- 
body might argue as follows. Scripture tells us that this 
world has originated from an intelligent cause ; therefore, 
starting from the observation that the attributes of the cause 
survive in the effect, I assume this whole world to be in- 
telligent. The absence of manifestation of intelligence 
(in this world) is to be ascribed to the particular nature of 
the modification J ust as undoubtedly intelligent beings do 
not manifest their intelligence in certain states such as sleep, 
swoon, &c., so the intelligence of wood and earth also is 
not manifest (although it exists). In consequence of this 
difference produced by the manifestation and non-mani- 
festation of intelligence (in the case of men, animals, &c,, on 
the one side, and wood, stones, &c. on the other side), and 
in consequence of form, colour, and the like being present in 
the one case and absent in the other, nothing prevents the 
instruments of action (earth, wood, &c.) from standing to 
the souls in the relation of a subordinate to a superior thing, 
although in reality both are equally of an intelligent nature. 
And just as such substances as flesh, broth, pap, and the 
like may, owing to their individual differences, stand in the 
relation of mutual subserviency, although fundamentally 
they are all of the same nature, viz. mere modifications, of 
earth, so it will be in the case under discussion also, with- 
out there being done any violence to the well-known 
distinction (of beings intelligent and non-intelligent). — This 
reasoning — the purvapakshin replies — if valid might remove 
to a certain extent that difference of character between 


, ^ In the case of things commonly considered non-intelligent, 

intelligence is not influenced by an internal organ, and on that 
account remains unperceived; samaste ^agati sato-rpi /^aitanyasya 
tatra tatrAnta^kara«aparmamS.nupar'igS.d anupalabdhir aviruddh^. 
An. Gi. 




II adhyAya, I pAda, 5. 


303 


Brahman and the world which is due to the circumstance 
of the one being intelligent and the other non-intelligent ; 
there would, however, still remain that other difference which 
results from the fact that the one is pure and the other 
impure. But in reality the argumentation of the objector 
does not even remove the first-named difference ; as is 
declared in the latter part of the Sutra, ‘ And its being such 
we learn from Scripture.’ For the assumption of the in- 
tellectuality of the entire world — which is supported neither 
by perception nor by inference, &c. — must be considered 
as resting on Scripture only in so far as the latter speaks 
of the world as having originated from an intelligent cause ; 
but that scriptural statement itself is contradicted by other 
texts which declare the world to be ‘of such a nature,’ 
i. e. of a nature different from that of its material cause. 
For the scriptural passage, ‘ It became that which is know- 
ledge and that which is devoid of knowledge’ (Taitt. Up. 
II, 6), which teaches that a certain class of beings is of a 
non-intelligent nature intimates thereby that the non-intel- 
ligentworld is differentfrom the intelligent Brahman. — But — 
somebody might again object — the sacred texts themselves 
sometimes speak of the elements and the bodily organs, 
which are generally considered to be devoid of intelligence, 
as intelligent beings. The following passages, for instance, 
attribute intelligence to the elements. ‘ The earth spoke ; ’ 
‘The waters spoke’ (.Sat. Br. VI, i, 3, 2; 4); and, again, 
* Fire thought ; ’ ‘ Water thought ’ {Kh. Up. VI, a, 3 ; 4). 
Other texts attribute intelligence to the bodily organs, 
‘ These pra/zas when quarrelling together as to who was the 
best went to Brahman’ (Bri. Up. VI, i, 7); and, again, 
‘ They said to Speech : Do thou sing out for us ’ (BrA Up. 
I, 3, 3). — To this objection the purvapakshin replies in the 
following Shtra. 

5. But (there takes place) denotation of the super- 
intending (deities), on account of the difference and 
the connexion. 

The word ‘ but ’ discards the doubt raised. We are 


304 


vedInta-sOtras. 


not entitled to base the assumption of the elements and 
the sense organs being of an intellectual nature on such 
passages as ‘ the earth spoke/ &c. because ‘ there takes 
place denotation of that which presides.’ In the case of 
actions like speaking, disputing, and so on, which require 
intelligence, the scriptural passages denote not the mere 
material elements and organs, but rather the intelligent 
divinities which preside over earth, &c., on the one hand, 
and Speech, &c., on the other hand. And why so ? ‘ On 
account of the difference and the connexion.’ The 
difference is the one previously referred to between the 
enjoying souls, on the one hand, and the material elements 
and organs, on the other hand, which is founded on the 
distinction between intelligent and non-intelligent beings ; 
that difference would not be possible if all beings were 
intelligent. Moreover, the Kaiishitakins in their account of 
the dispute of the pr^;^as make express use of the word 
' divinities ’ in order to preclude the idea of the mere material 
organs being meant, and in order to include the super- 
intending intelligent beings. They say, ' The deities con- 
tending with each for who was the best ; ' and, again, ‘ All 
these deities having recognised the pre-eminence in pra;^a’ 
(Kau. Up. II, 14). — And, secondly, Mantras, Arthavddas, 
Itihasas, Pura;zas, &c. all declare that intelligent presiding 
divinities are connected with everything. Moreover, such 
scriptural passages as ‘ Agni having become Speech entered 
into the mouth ’ (Ait. Ar. II, 4, a, 4) show that each 
bodily organ is connected with its own favouring divinity. 
And in the passages supplementary to the quarrel of the 
pr^zzas we read in one place how, for the purpose of 
settling their relative excellence, they went to Pra^dpati, 
and how they settled their quarrel on the ground of presence 
and absence, each of them, as Pra^apati had advised, de- 
parting from the body for some time (‘ They went to their 
father Pra^dpati and said,’ &c, ; Kh. Up. V, i, 7) ; and in 
another place it is said that they made an offering to prizza 
(Bzff. Up. VI, I, 13), &c. ; all of them proceedings which are 
analogous to those of men, &c., and therefore strengthen 
the hypothesis that the text refers to the superintending 



II ADHYAyA, I PADA, 6. 


305 


deities. In the case of such passages as, ' Fire thought,’ 
we must assume that the thought spoken of is that of 
the highest deity which is connected with its effects as 
a superintending principle, — From all this it follows that 
this world is different in nature from Brahman, and hence 
cannot have it for its material cause. 

To this objection raised by the purvapakshin the next 
Sutra replies. 

6. But it is seen. 

The word ‘ but ’ discards the purvapaksha. 

Your assertion that this world cannot have originated 
from Brahman on account of the difference of its character 
is not founded on an absolutely true tenet. For we see 
that from man, who is acknowledged to be intelligent, non- 
intelligent things such as hair and nails originate, and that, 
on the other hand, from avowedly non-intelligent matter, 
such as cow-dung, scorpions and similar animals are pro- 
duced. — But — to state an objection — the real cause of the 
non-intelligent hair and nails is the human body which is 
itself non-intelligent, and the non-intelligent bodies only of 
scorpions are the effects of non-intelligent dung. — Even 
thus, we reply, there remains a difference in character 
(between the cause, for instance, the dung, and the effect, 
for instance, the body of the scorpion), in so far as some 
non-intelligent matter (the body) is the abode of an 
intelligent principle (the scorpion’s soul), while other 
non-intelligent matter (the dung) is not. Moreover, the 
difference of nature — due to the cause passing over 
into the effect — between the' bodies of men on the one 
side and hair and nails on the other side, is, on account 
of the divergence of colour, form, &c., very considerable 
after all. The same remark holds good with regard to 
cow-dung and the bodies of scorpions, &c. If absolute 
equality were insisted on (in the case of one thing being 
the effect of another), the relation of material cause and 
effect (which after all requires a distinction of the two) 
would be annihilated. If, again, it be remarked that in the 
case of men and hair as well as in that of scorpions and 
[34] X 



VEDANTA-RtJTRAS. 


306 

cow-dung there is one characteristic feature, at least, which 
is found in the effect as well as in the cause, viz. the quality 
of being of an earthy nature ; we reply that in the case of 
Brahman and the world also one characteristic feature, viz. 
that of existence (sattd), is found in ether, &c. (\vhich are 
the effects) as well as in Brahman (which is the cause).' — ■ 
He, moreover, who on the ground of the difference of the 
attributes tries to invalidate the doctrine of Brahman 
being the cause of the world, must assert that he under- 
stands by difference of attributes either the non-occurrence 
(in the world) of the entire complex of the characteristics 
of Brahman, or the non-occurrence of any (some or other) 
characteristic, or the non-occurrence of the characteristic 
of intelligence. The first assertion would lead to the 
negation of the relation of cause and effect in general, 
which relation is based on the fact of there being in the effect 
something over and above the cause (for if the two were 
absolutely identical they could not be distinguished). The 
second assertion is open to the charge of running counter 
to what is well known ; for, as we have already remarked, 
the characteristic quality of existence which belongs to 
Brahman is found likewise in ether and so on. For the 
third assertion the requisite proving instances are wanting ; 
for what instances could be brought forward against the 
upholder of Brahman, in order to prove the general 
assertion that whatever is devoid of intelligence is seen not 
to be an effect of Brahman ? (The upholder of Brahman 
would simply not admit any such instances) because he 
maintains that this entire complex of things has Brahman 
for its material cause. And that all such assertions are 
contrary to Scripture, is clear, as we have already shown it 
to be the purport of Scripture that Brahman is the cause 
and substance of the world. It has indeed been maintained 
by the purvapakshin that the other means of proof also 
(and not merely sacred tradition) apply to Brahman, on 
account of its being an accomplished entity (not something 
to be accomplished as religious duties are) ; but such an 
assertion is entirely gratuitous. For Brahman, as being 
devoid of form and so on, cannot become an object of 



II ADHYAYA, I pAdA, 6. 307 


perception ; and as there are in its case no characteristic 
marks (on which conclusions, &c. might be based), inference 
also and the other means of proof do not apply to it ; but, 
like religious duty, it is to be known solely on the ground 
of holy tradition. Thus Scripture also declares, ‘ That 
doctrine is not to be obtained by argument, but when it is 
declared by another then, O dearest ! it is easy to under- 
stand ’ (Ka. Up. I, 3 , 9). And again, ' Who in truth knows 
it? Who could here proclaim it, whence this creation 
sprang ?’ (Rzg-v. Sa?;^h. X, mg, 6). These two mantras show 
that the cause of this world is not to be known even by 
divine beings (i.rvara)^ of extraordinary power and wisdom. 

There are also the following Smrzti passages to the same 
effect : ' Do not apply reasoning to those things which are 
uncognisable ^ ’ ‘Unevolved he is called, imcognisable, 
unchangeable;’ ‘Not the legions of the gods know my 
origin, not the great Wshis. For I myself am in every way 
the origin of the gods and great rzshis ’ (Bha. Gi. X, 2). 
— And if it has been maintained above that the scriptural 
passage enjoining thought (on Brahman) in addition to 
mere hearing (of the sacred texts treating of Brahman) 
shows that reasoning also is to be allowed its place, we 
reply that the passage must not deceitfully be taken 
as enjoining bare independent ratiocination, but must be 
understood to represent reasoning as a subordinate auxiliary 
of intuitional knowledge. By reasoning of the latter type 
we may, for instance, arrive at the following conclusions ; 
that because the state of dream and the waking state exclude 
each other the Self is not connected with those states ; 
that, as the soul in the state of deep sleep leaves the 
phenomenal world behind and becomes one with that 
whose Self is pure Being, it has for its Self pure Being 
apart from the phenomenal world ; that as the world 
springs from Brahman it cannot be separate from Brahman, 


^ On hvara in the above meaning, compare Deussen, p. 69, 
note 41. 

^ The line ‘ prakn’tibhya/^ param,’ &c. is -wanting in all MSS. 
I have consulted. 


X 2 



vedAnta-si&tras. 


308 

according to the principle of the non-difference of cause 
and effect, &c.^ The fallaciousness of mere reasoning will 
moreover be demonstrated later on (II, i, ii). — He^, more- 
over, who merely on the ground of the sacred tradition 
about an intelligent cause of the world would assume this 
entire world to be of an intellectual nature would find room 
for the other scriptural passage quoted above (‘ He became 
knowledge and what is devoid of knowledge’) which 
teaches a distinction of intellect and non -intellect ; for 
he could avail himself of the doctrine of intellect being 
sometimes manifested and sometimes non-manifested. His 
antagonist, on the other hand ( 1 . e. the Sankhya), would not 
be able to make anything of the passage, for it distinctly 
teaches that the highest cause constitutes the Self of the 
entire world. 

If, then, on account of difference of character that which 
is intelligent cannot pass over into what is non-intelligent, 
that also which is non-intelligent (i.e. in our case, the 
non-intelligent pradhana of the Sankhyas) cannot pass over 
into what is intelligent. — (So much for argument’s sake,) 
but apart from that, as the argument resting on difference 
of character has already been refuted, we must assume an 
intelligent cause of the world in agreement with Scripture. 


^ Ananda Giri on the above passage : jrutyakahkshitaw tarkam 
eva inananavidhivisbayam udaharati svapnanteti. Svapna^Sgaritayor 
mithovyabhii’drad atmana/^ svabhavatas tadvattvabhavad avasthd- 
dvayena tasya svato»sa7;^pr?ktatvam ato ^ivasyavasthavalvena 
nabrahmatvam ity ailha^. Tathdpi dehaditadalmyenatmano bhtv^n 
na ni/^prapawA’abrahmatety ^ahkyaha sawprasdde X’eti, Sata soraya 
tada sawzpanno bhavatiti jrute/^ sushupte ni^prapa^z/^asadatmatv^va- 
gamad atmanas tathdvidhabrahmatvasiddhir ity artha^. Dvaita- 
grShipratyakshadivirodhat katham dtmano^dvitiyabrahmatvam ity 
d^ahkya ta^yatvidihetund brahmatiriktavastvabhavasiddher adhya- 
kshtdinam atatvavedakaprama/^y^d avirodhad yuktam Stmano 
dvitfyabrahmatvam ity aha prapa7K’asyeti. 

® Let us finally assume, merely for argument’s sake, that a 
vailakshawya of cause and effect is not admissible, and enquire 
whether that assumption can be reconciled more easily with an 
intelligent or a non-intelligent cause of the world. 




II adhyAya, r pAda, 8. 309 

7. If (it is said that the effect is) non-existent 
(before its origination) ; we do not allow that 
because it is a mere negation (without an object). 

If Brahman, which is intelligent, pure, and devoid of 
qualities such as sound, and so on, is supposed to be the 
cause of an effect which is of an opposite nature, i. e. 
non-intelligent, impure, possessing the qualities of sound, 
&c., it follows that the effect has to be considered as 
non-existing before its actual origination. But this con- 
sequence cannot be acceptable to you — the Vedantin — 
who maintain the doctrine of the effect existing in the 
cause already. 

This objection of yours, we reply, is without any force, 
on account of its being a mere negation. If you nega,tive 
the existence of the effect previous to its actual origina- 
tion, your negation is a mere negation without an object to 
be negatived. The negation (implied in ‘ non-existent ’) 
can certainly not have for its object the existence of the 
effect previous to its origination, since the effect must be 
viewed as ‘ existent,’ through and in the Self of the cause, 
before its origination as well as after it ; for at the present 
moment also this effect does not exist independently, apart 
from the cause ; according to such scriptural passages as, 
‘ Whosoever looks for anything elsewhere than in the Self 
is abandoned by everything’ (Br/. Up. II, 4, 6). In so 
far, on the other hand, as the effect exists through the Self 
of the cause, its existence is the same before the actual be- 
ginning of the effect (as after it). — But Brahman, which is 
devoid of qualities such as sound, &c., is the cause of this 
world (possessing all those qualities)! — True, but the effect 
with all its qualities does not exist without the Self of the 
cause either now or before the actual beginning (of the 
effect) ; hence it cannot be said that (according to our 
doctrine) the effect is non-existing before its actual begin- 
ning. — This point will be elucidated in detail in the section 
treating of the non-difference of cause and effect. 

8. On account of such consequences at the time 



310 


vedanta-sOtras. 


of reabsorption (the doctrine maintained hitherto) 
is objectionable. 

The purvapakshin raises further objections, — If an effect 
which is distinguished by the qualities of grossness, con- 
sisting of parts, absence of intelligence, limitation, impurity, 
&c., is admitted to have Brahman for its cause, it follows 
that at the time of reabsorption (of the world into Brah- 
man), the effect, by entering into the state of non-division 
from its cause, inquinates the latter with its properties. As 
therefore — on your doctrine — the cause (i. e. Brahman) as 
well as the effect is, at the time of reabsorption, character- 
ised by impurity and similar qualities, the doctrine of the 
Upanishads, according to which an omniscient Brahman is 
the cause of the world, cannot be upheld. — Another ob- 
jection to that doctrine is that in consequence of all 
distinctions passing at the time, of reabsorption into the 
state of non-distinction there would be no special causes 
left at the time of a new beginning of the world, and con- 
sequently the new world could not arise with all the 
distinctions of enjoying souls, objects to be enjoyed and so 
on (which are actually observed to exist). — A third ob- 
jection is that, if we assume the origin of a new world even 
after the annihilation of all works, &c. (which are the causes 
of a new world arising) of the enjoying souls which enter 
into the state of non -difference from the highest Brahman, 
we are led to the conclusion that also those (souls) which 
have obtained final release again appear in the new world. — 
If you finally say, ‘ Well, let this world remain distinct from 
the highest Brahman even at the time of reabsorption,’ we 
reply that in that case a reabsorption will not take place 
at all, and that, moreover, the effect’s existing separate 
from the cause is not possible. — For all these reasons the 
Vedanta doctrine is objectionable. 

To this the next Sutra replies. 

9. Not so ; as there are parallel instances. 

There is nothing objectionable in our system. — The 
objection that the effect when being reabsorbed into its 



II ADHYAYA, I PADA, 9. 


3II 


cause would inquinate the latter with its qualities does not 
damage our position ‘ because there are parallel instances/ 
i. e. because there are instances of effects not inquinating 
with their qualities the causes into which they are re- 
absorbed. Things, for instance, made of clay, such as pots, 
&c., which in their state of separate existence are of various 
descriptions, do not, when they are reabsorbed into their 
original matter (i. e. clay), impart to the latter their in- 
dividual qualities ; nor do golden ornaments impart their 
individual qualities to their elementary material, i. e. gold, 
into which they may finally be reabsorbed. Nor does the 
fourfold complex of organic beings which springs from 
earth impart its qualities to the latter at the time of re- 
absorption. You (i. e. the purvapakshin), on the other hand, 
have not any instances to quote in your favour. For re- 
absorption could not take place at all if the effect when 
passing back into its causal substance continued to subsist 
there with all its individual properties. And ^ that in spite 
of the non-difference of cause and effect the effect has its 
Self in the cause, but not the cause in the effect, is a point 
which we shall render clear later on, under II, i, 14. 

Moreover, the objection that the effect would impart its 
qualities to the cause at the time of reabsorption is formu- 
lated too narrowly because, the identity of cause and effect 
being admitted, the same would take place during the time 
of the subsistence (of the effect, previous to its reabsorption). 
That the identity of cause and effect (of Brahman and the 
world) holds good indiscriminately with regard to all time 
(not only the time of reabsorption), is declared in many 
scriptural passages, as, for instance, ‘ This everything is that 
Self’ (Brz. Up. II, 4, 6); ‘The Self is all this’ {Kk. Up. 
VII, 35, ia); ‘The immortal Brahman is this before’ (Mu. 
Up. II, a, ii) ; ‘All this is Brahman’ {K/i. Up. Ill, 14, i). 

With regard to the case referred to in the 5 ruti-passages 
we refute the assertion of the cause being affected by the 


^ Nanu pralayak^le karyadharm-S^- ^en navatish/i^eran na tarhi 
ldra;^adharmS api tishMeyus tayor abhedat tatrahinanyatve^piti. 
An. Gi. 



312 


vedInta-sOtras. 


effect and its qualities by showing that the latter are the 
mere fallacious superimpositions of nescience, and the very 
same argument holds good with reference to reabsorption 
also. — We can quote other examples in favour of our 
doctrine. As the magician is not at any time affected by 
the magical illusion produced by himself, because it is un- 
real, so the highest Self is not affected by the world- 
illusion. And as one dreaming person is not affected by 
the illusory visions of his dream because they do not 
accompany the waking state and the state of dreamless 
sleep ; so the one permanent witness of the three states 
(viz. the highest Self which is the one unchanging witness of 
the creation, subsistence, and reabsorption of the world) is 
not touched by the mutually exclusive three states. For 
that the highest Self appears in those three states, is a mere 
illusion, not more substantial than the snake for which the 
rope is mistaken in the twilight. With reference to this point 
teachers knowing the true tradition of the Vedanta have 
made the following declaration, ‘ When the individual soul 
which is held in the bonds of slumber by the beginningless 
MayS. awakes, then it knows the eternal, sleepless, dream- 
less non-duality’ (Gaurfap. Kar. I, i6). 

So far we have shown that — on our doctrine — there is no 
danger of the cause being affected at the time of reabsorp- 
tion by the qualities of the effect, such as grossness and the 
like. — With regard to the second objection, viz. that if we 
assume all distinctions to pass (at the time of reabsorption} 
into the state of non-distinction there would be no special 
reason for the origin of a new world affected with dis- 
tinctions, we likewise refer to the ‘ existence of parallel 
instances.’ For the case is parallel to that of deep sleep 
and trance. In those states also the soul enters into an 
essential condition of non-distinction ; nevertheless, wrong 
knowledge being not yet finally overcome, the old state of 
distinction re-establishes itself as soon as the soul awakes 
from its sleep or trance. Compare the scriptural passage, 
‘All these creatures when they have become merged in 
the True, know not that they are merged in the True. 
Whatever these creatures are here, whether a lion, or a 



II ADHYAYA, I PADA, lO. 


313 


wolf, or a boar, or a worm, or a midge, or a gnat, or a 
musquito, that they become again’ {Kh. Up. VI, 9, a; 3). 
For just as during the subsistence of the world the phe- 
nomenon of multifarious distinct existence, based on wrong 
knowledge, proceeds unimpeded like the vision of a dream, 
although there is only one highest Self devoid of all dis- 
tinction; so, we conclude, there remains, even after re- 
absorption, the power of distinction (potential distinction) 
founded on wrong knowledge. — Herewith the objection 
that — according to our doctrine — even the finally released 
souls would be born again is already disposed of. They 
will not be born again because in their case wrong know- 
ledge has been entirely discarded by perfect knowledge. 
' — The last alternative finally (which the purvapakshin had 
represented as open to the Veddntin), viz. that even at the 
time of reabsorption the world should remain distinct from 
Brahman, precludes itself because it is not admitted by the 
Veddntins themselves. — Hence the system founded on the 
Upanishads is in every way unobjectionable. 

10. And because the objections (raised by the 
Sankhya against the Vedfinta doctrine) apply to his 
view also. 

The doctrine of our opponent is liable to the very same 
objections which he urges against us, viz. in the following 
manner. — The objection that this world cannot have 
sprung from Brahman on account of its difference of 
character applies no less to the doctrine of the pradh^na 
being the cause of the world ; for that doctrine also assumes 
that from a pradh^na devoid of sound and other qualities a 
world is produced which possesses those very qualities. 
The beginning of an effect different in character being thus 
admitted, the Sankhya is equally driven to the doctrine 
that before the actual beginning the effect was non-existent. 
And, moreover, it being admitted (by the Sankhya also) 
that at the time of reabsorption the effect passes back into 
the state of non-distinction from the cause, the case of 
the Sankhya here also is the same as ours. — And, further, if 



314 


vedAnta-s^tras. 


(as the SAhkhya also must admit) at the time of reabsorp- 
tion the differences of all the special effects are obliterated 
and pass into a state of general non-distinction, the special 
fixed conditions, which previous to reabsorption were the 
causes of the different worldly existence of each soul, can, 
at the time of a new creation, no longer be determined, 
there being no cause for them ; and if you assume them to 
be determined without a cause, you are driven to the 
admission that even the released souls have to re-enter a 
state of bondage, there being equal absence of a cause (in 
the case of the released and the non-released souls). And 
if you try to avoid this conclusion by assuming that at the 
time of reabsorption some individual differences pass into 
the state of non- distinction, others not, we reply that in 
that case the latter could not be considered as effects of the 
pradhdna K — It thus appears that all those difficulties (raised 
by the Sahkhya) apply to both views, and cannot therefore 
be urged against either only. But as either of the two 
doctrines must necessarily be accepted, we are strengthened 
— by the outcome of the above discussion — in the opinion 
that the alleged difficulties are no real difficulties 

II. If it be said that, in consequence of the ill- 
foundechiess of reasoning, we must frame our con- 
clusions otherwise ; (we reply that) thus also there 
would result non-release. 

In matters to be known from Scripture mere reasoning is 
not to be relied on for the following reason also. As the 
thoughts of man are altogether unfettered, reasoning which 
disregards the holy texts and rests on individual opinion 
only has no proper foundation. We see how arguments, 
which some clever men had excogitated with great pains, 
are shown, by people still more ingenious, to be fallacious, and 
how the arguments of the latter again are refuted in their turn 

^ For if they are effects of the pradhSna they must as such be 
reabsorbed into it at the time of general reabsorption. 

^ And that the Vedanta view is preferable because the nullity of 
the objections has already been demonstrated in its case. 



II ADHYAYA, I pIdA, II. 


315 


by other men ; so that, on account of the diversity of men’s 
opinions, it is impossible to accept mere reasoning as having 
a sure foundation. Nor can we get over this difficulty by 
accepting as well-founded the reasoning of some person of 
recognised mental eminence, may he now be Kapila or any- 
body else ; since we observe that even men of the most 
undoubted mental eminence, such as Kapila, KauMa, and 
other founders of philosophical schools, have contradicted 
one another. 

But (our adversary may here be supposed to say), we will 
fashion our reasoning otherwise, i.e. in such a manner as 
not to lay it open to the charge of having no proper foun- 
dation, You cannot, after all, maintain that no reasoning 
whatever is well-founded; for you yourself can found your 
assertion that reasoning has no foundation on reasoning only; 
your assumption being that because some arguments are seen 
to be devoid of foundation other arguments as belonging to 
the same class are likewise devoid of foundation. Moreover, 
if all reasoning were unfounded, the whole course of practical 
human life would have to come to an end. For we see that 
men act, with a view to obtaining pleasure and avoiding 
pain in the future time, on the assumption that the past, the 
present, and the future are uniform. — Further, in the case of 
passages of Scripture (apparently) contradicting each other, 
the ascertainment of the real sense, which depends on a 
preliminary refutation of the apparent sense, can be effected 
only by an accurate definition of the meaning of sentences, 
and that involves a process of reasoning. Thus Manu also 
expresses himself : ‘ Perception, inference, and the j-astra 
according to the various traditions, this triad is to be known 
well by one desiring clearness in regard to right. — He who 
applies reasoning not contradicted by the Veda to the Veda 
and the (Smrz'ti) doctrine of law, he, and no other, knows the 
law’ (Manu Smnti XII, 105, 106). And that ‘want of 
foundation’, to which you object, really constitutes the beauty 
of reasoning, because it